Apple saw a considerable increase in market share from an already dominant 76% in the third quarter of 2011 to 88% in the final quarter of the year across Western Europe.
A number of reasons contributed to the brand’s success. The iPhone 4s success was directly proportional to the success of the iPad, partly due to even tighter synergies between Apple mobile devices than ever before with the company’s iCloud offering allowing quick and easy sharing of content across devices.
“Christmas time was in favour of Apple as sheer brand awareness and in-store recommendations drove sales of the already dominant iPad amongst consumers buying presents”, said Salman Chaudhry, mobile analyst at CONTEXT. “Apple’s dominance in the tablet market is still linked to price and market penetration of its iOS ecosystem.“
CONTEXT notes that the recent trends are a precursor to a two-tier industry based on price with luxury brands on one end of the spectrum and standard devices on the other.
The IT market research firm sees little space for a middle market for most of 2012 (e.g. £250-£400)
“We believe that traditional PC vendors are likely to see success towards the third and fourth quarter of this year, when Windows 8 is set to launch offering an integrated and reliable ecosystem”, added Chaudhry. “These vendors are likely to shift focus to or at least divert some emphasis onto the enterprise space to launch hybrid tablets/ laptops, with designs akin to the EeePad transformer becoming more common.”
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The CONTEXT Distribution Panel records over two billion euros per week in technology product sales to resellers serving businesses and consumers across Europe, based on sales reports from over eighty of the region's leading national and international broadline and specialist distributors. This Panel benefits from exclusive access to EMEA data from the Global Technology Distribution Council (GTDC), a international consortium of the IT industry’s leading wholesale distributors. This, coupled with the Panel's strong local representation, provides the most comprehensive and accurate reporting of channel sales out data in Europe.