New research from TrendForce has revealed that global tablet shipments are expected to decline by 4.3 per cent year-over-year in 2018 to 145.5m units as sales of entry-level devices decline due to the rise of smart speakers and higher currency exchange rates.
In response to the overall decline of tablet sales worldwide, brands typically tend to offer lower prices to retain customers while investing less in new tablet development.
Huawei appears to be doing just the opposite and the Chinese hardware maker is developing both smartphones as well as new tablets. The company's tablet shipments are expected to rise by more than 30 per cent to more than 14m units with a market share of 9.8 per cent.
Huawei's increased tablet sales will also enable the company to become the 3rd largest tablet manufacturer this year surpassing Amazon.
Huawei up, Amazon down
Amazon's focus has shifted from tablets to its Echo line of smart speakers and after three years of strong growth, the US e-commerce giant is expected to record a more conservative shipment of 13.4m units this year.
Meanwhile, Apple has launched its new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models ahead of the holidays. However, TrendForce predicts that sales of these devices will be hurt by the fact that they were released just after the company starting selling new iPhones with premium prices.
“With the launch of new devices in the coming era of 5G, the tablet category will still help the brands build a strategic future, retaining their customer bases and becoming more influential in the global IoT network," TrendForce notebook analyst Kou-Han Tseng said.
"Therefore, major brands will not give up their tablet product lines, even at the expense of downsizing their entry-level product ranges.
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After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.