Although Android might currently account for 70.1% of phone sales across Europe, it has always seemed to struggle against the device that effectively created the tablet market we see today, the Apple iPad.

Tablet sales have rocketed since its 2010 launch, with ABI Research reporting that the tablet market is now worth $12.7 billion. Taking a large slice of that pie is certainly not something to be scoffed at.

The research firm went on to reveal that during the second quarter of this year "the number of Android-powered tablets surpassed iOS-based slates for the first time."

Apple continues to fight strongly, with its market share based on very small product range, the iPad and iPad Mini. However the influx of cheaper Android based tablets such as the Google Nexus 7 and the Amazon Kindle Fire pose a real threat.

Big no longer Beautiful?

ABI Research Senior Practice Director Jeff Orr commented that "smaller 7-inch class tablets are finally the majority of shipments".

Apple's launch of the iPad Mini was somewhat delayed in response to competitors, with the Kindle Fire leading the way with its launch in November 2011. Google launched its own 7-inch tablet, the original Nexus 7, in July 2012.

With the recent launch of the budget Tesco Hudl, Amazon Kindle Fire HDX and the slightly higher specced, higher priced new Google Nexus 7, Apple's wait to release the iPad Mini 2 could push customers further in Google's direction.

Via TalkAndroid