Amazon’s Kindle Fire is making its mark on the tablet sector, grabbing a 14 percent share of the market and skyrocketing into second place in the market after you-know-what, IHS iSuppli has found. Amazon’s success came at the expense of Apple, whose share of tablets fell to 57 percent, however the company says it was the iPhone 4S that may have put a crimp in iPad sales.
Consumers who may have otherwise snatched up the iPad during the quarter instead opted for the iPhone 4S, causing shipments to fall short of the company’s estimates. “The rollout of the iPhone 4S in October generated intense competition for Apple purchasers’ disposable income, doing more to limit iPad shipment growth than competition from the Kindle Fire and other media tablets”, tablet analyst Rhoda Alexander says.
While Amazon does not break out Kindle sales, IHS believes the device sold about 3.9 million units in its first quarter of availability. This pales in comparison to the 15.4 million iPads shipped in the same quarter, but the iPad ecosystem is much more mature. Instead compare it to the iPad’s initial quarter back in April through June of 2010. Apple sold 3.2 million units in its first quarter. Impressed now?
I would not call the Kindle Fire an iPad killer. At the same time, I think fellow Android tablet manufacturers now have some very strong competition: Amazon’s desire to link its entertainment services with a device at low cost is proving attractive to consumers.
The Kindle Fire isn’t for everybody. It’s basically a glorified e-book reader, with some tablet like characteristics. Either way, consumers are responding to it, and Amazon clearly has a success on its hands.