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Tablet shipments hit a 12-year low declining by over 20% in 2023

Global tablet shipments saw a significant drop in the fourth quarter of 2023, marking the most substantial decline in Q4 shipments since 2016. Additionally, there was a decline of over 20% in tablet shipments throughout 2023, reaching the lowest point since 2011.

According to a report from the International Data Corporation (IDC), worldwide tablet shipments in 2023 totaled 128.5 million units, showing a decline of 20.5% compared to the previous year. This decline represents the lowest volume of tablet shipments worldwide since 2011. In Q4 2023 alone, shipments reached 36.8 million units, down by 17.4% year-on-year.

Anuroopa Nataraj, senior research analyst with IDC’s Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers, commented on the situation, saying, “With no significant improvements in the economy and consumers allocating their spending to areas beyond consumer electronics, tablets may not be at the forefront of priorities. Project delays and spending freezes have also contributed to deferred purchases throughout much of 2023.”

Here’s a breakdown of the top five tablet companies in Q4 2023:

1. **Apple**: Despite a decline in shipments, Apple continued to lead the global tablet market with a market share of over 40%. However, the Cupertino-based tech giant saw a significant decrease of 29.3% year-on-year.

2. **Samsung**: Holding the second position, Samsung experienced a slight decline in shipments but maintained its standing in the market.

3. **Huawei**: Huawei, Lenovo, and Xiaomi, occupying the next three positions, reported growth in shipments in Q4 2023.

In terms of annual shipments for 2023, all top five companies experienced a decline compared to the previous year:

1. **Apple**: Shipment declined from 60.5 million devices in 2022 to 48.5 million devices in 2023, marking a decrease of 19.8%.

2. **Samsung**: Samsung’s shipments decreased from 30.4 million in 2022 to 26.2 million in 2023, a decline of 13.9%.

3. **Lenovo**: Lenovo’s shipments went down from 11.6 million in 2022 to 9.3 million in 2023, showing a decrease of 19.7%.

4. **Huawei**: Huawei’s shipments dropped from 9.1 million in 2022 to 8.7 million in 2023, representing a decline of 4%.

5. **Amazon**: Amazon experienced the most significant decline, with shipments plummeting from 16 million in 2022 to 5.5 million in 2023, marking a massive decrease of 65.9%.

Looking ahead to 2024, while there’s optimism for a rebound in shipments, analysts remain cautious. The recovery largely depends on the overall economic conditions, and the increasing prominence of artificial intelligence (AI) may shift focus towards computers and smartphones. However, tablets are expected to become an integral part of the conversation in the technology landscape.

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