Since its introduction in 2010, Apple has released six versions of the iPad, and has sold more than 300 million units worldwide. In 2015 alone, Apple sold nearly 50 million iPads, generating 21.33 billion U.S. dollars in revenues. Sales of the iPad, in that particular year, accounted for about nine percent of Apple’s total global revenue.
After the introduction of the iPad, competitors rushed into the market with their own tablets, and Apple saw its global market share decrease from about 60 percent in the beginning of 2011 to around 25 percent by the end 2015. Apple continues to be the leading tablet vendor in the world though, with Samsung as its closest competitor.
Apple is particularly strong in the North American tablet market, accounting for about 70 percent of the market share in the region. Emerging brands such as Lenovo and Huawei have been gaining market share in the tablet market.
Even though Apple is still the leading tablet vendor, the company no longer has the most popular operating system for tablets. Apple’s iOS market share dropped from about 95 percent in the beginning of 2010 to 24 percent in the beginning of 2015, while Android slowly gained market presence. Google’s Android accounted for 70 percent of all global tablet shipments in the beginning of 2015.
The figures for the coming years show a similar trend for the tablet OS market with Apple’s iOS forecast to account for around 25 percent of global tablet shipments, Google’s Android forecast to hold about 60 percent of the share, and Windows’ operating system, 10 to 17 percent of the market share.
Apple offers one million native iPad apps. Native apps only run on iPad’s operating system, therefore, they must be downloaded from the iTunes App Store. Game is the most popular app category amongst iPad users, followed by entertainment and education.