Why Samsung has made such rapid gains in the tablet market

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Mar. 28 2014, Published 8:00 a.m. ET

Samsung made rapid gains in the tablet market in 2013

In the previous article in this series, we discussed how Apple (AAPL) still leads the tablet market despite market share losses over the last year or so. According to Gartner, Apple’s market share in the tablet market declined from 52.8% in 2012 to 36.0% in 2013, while Samsung’s (SSNLF) increased from 7.4% in 2012 to 19.1% in 2013. Another player, Lenovo (LNVGY), made significant gains in this market and increased its share from 1.9% to 3.3%, while ASUS and Amazon (AMZN) lost some share.

Samsung’s success can be attributed to a large variety of offerings at different price points

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Over the last year or so, there’s been a considerable consumer shift towards cheaper tablets. Samsung’s success can be attributed to not only introducing cheaper tablets, but also expanding and improving its Galaxy tablet portfolio along with strong marketing and promotional activities. Plus, Samsung offers a large variety of tablets at different price points, which helps it cater to different consumers according to their budgets.

In April last year, Samsung introduced the seven-inch Galaxy Tab 3. In June, it followed up with the eight-inch and 10.1-inch Galaxy Tab 3 tablets as well as the 10.1-inch ATIV Tab 3, running Microsoft’s (MSFT) Windows 8. In September, Samsung launched the Galaxy Note 10.1. So Samsung has been trying to offer a variety of tablets of different sizes at different price points, which has proven to be a success.

Amazon is following in Samsung’s footsteps, introducing different tablet offerings

Although Amazon lost share in the tablet market, it did introduce a few new Kindle versions. In September 2013, Amazon launched seven-inch and 8.9-inch versions of the Kindle Fire HDX. During the same month, Amazon also announced the second-generation Kindle Paperwhite. However, these models didn’t prove to be major successes amid the highly competitive tablet market.

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