While the popularity of the iPad continues to surge, demand for the Kindle Fire has staggered significantly since its release last September. According to a new report by ABI Research, the tablet market has experienced 185 percent growth since last year, with 18.2 million tablets shipped in the first quarter of 2012 alone.
Apple continued to hold a stranglehold on the tablet market by accounting for a tremendous 65 percent share — or 11.8 million — of those tablets shipped in the first quarter. The launch of the new iPad with Retina display and price reduction on the iPad 2 helped contribute to the high quarterly sales for Apple.
The report claims that Kindle Fire shipments have “fizzled” since the start of the year, allowing Samsung to take over the number two spot in the tablet market with 1.1 million units shipped in the first quarter. Research in Motion also showed some promise with BlackBerry PlayBook sales up 233 percent in the last quarter, while Lenovo grew 107 percent.
Shipments of Asus tablets, however, have been stagnant since the end of last year. Dell, Hewlett-Packard, and LG are all preparing to introduce new lineups of tablets that are based on Android 4.0 and Windows 8. But for now, the tablet market largely remains the “iPad market,” and rumors of a so-called “iPad mini” could help Apple distance themselves even further from their nearest competitors.