Market analysts make a name for themselves by predicting future trends in various industries. They use a multitude of marketing techniques and existing data to make sound judgements on trends for the coming year, or years in some cases. That being said, Android has had its fair share of naysayers predicting uncouth things for the platform or ecosystem in general. Analysts are not always spot on, which means their market predictions don't always come true.
According to three analysts with Pacific Crest, Michael McConnell, John Vinh, and James Faucette, we have a fresh set of predictions for the tablet market in 2013. They propose that Apple will reign supreme again this year, with sales in excess of 86.3 million units; that's an estimated 30% year-over-year increase.
"We continue to see Apple holding a share lead in the tablet market this year, with incremental share gains by Samsung and Google."
They seem to think that Samsung and Apple will secure second and third place in tablet sales this year, respectively.
Samsung is projected to see a sales boost of about 233% through this year, which is almost 40 million additional units. No doubt this is due to their outstanding Galaxy product line, namely the Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note series (perhaps even the Galaxy S4).
"Supply chain conversations indicate a goal of 40 million units for the Galaxy Tab and Galaxy Note 10.1 tablets in 2013 for Samsung. This would be a large increase over our estimate of 12 million tablets sold in 2012. Supporting this goal is a significant increase in activity for 1Q 13."
They also argue that Samsung's success will be most beneficial to Atmel, Maxim Integrated Technology, Synaptics, and Broadcom (obviously the companies that manufacture internal components used in Samsung's devices).
As mentioned above, Google is projected to secure third place when it comes to tablet sales. The analysts predict that Google will take 15.3% of the tablet market share this year, rending third place from Amazon, who will drop to fourth place. They also claim that Google will see a 263% sales growth, which puts unit sales well over 25 million units.
Interestingly enough, the firm thinks that Microsoft may be selling short its own tablet line because it exists in two different models. Some of Microsoft's Surface tablets are using ARM based processors (Surface RT) while others are using Intel based processors (Surface Pro).
"We believe Microsoft's conservative approach represents a lack of confidence in x86 Surface Pro tablet and lower-than-expected demand for the original ARM Holdings based Surface."
Still, the firm believes that Microsoft will move about 6.3 million units this year, more than tripling the 1.2 million units sold in December of last year. Seeing as December was the Surface tablet's first quarter on the market, that's not too shabby.
The real story here is that Samsung and Google will take more market share this year. Does anyone want to make a prediction about how long it will take before they steal first place from Apple?