Tablet, smartphone sales continue 2013 slide

End-of-financial-year sales appear to have failed to boost shipments, says IDC

It has not been a great year for mobile device sales in Australia and New Zealand, according to an IDC report released today.

Tablets and mobile phones declined in the first and second quarters, the first time that has happened for two consecutive quarters in the ANZ region, IDC said.

Tablet sales dropped 20 per cent in Q2 compared to the previous quarter, while mobile phone sales decreased by 5 per cent. Notebook sales declined by 6 per cent in the quarter.

Mobile phone sales decreased 21 per cent year-on-year. Despite the recent quarterly declines, tablet sales are still up 25 per cent compared to the same quarter last year. Notebook sales were down 26 per cent year-on-year.

The desktop market grew 8 per cent in the quarter after several quarters of decline. This sales boost was driven by a strong vendor push for all-in-one desktops and a seasonal pickup in Australian government desktop refreshes. Desktop sales are still down 10 per cent compared to Q2 2012.

“While it is not surprising that the notebook market recorded another quarter of market contraction, the consecutive tightening of tablet and mobile phones market is a first for ANZ,” IDC analyst, Amy Cheah, said in a statement.

“This does not necessarily mean these markets have hit saturation point, but it may be an early indication of device fatigue and commoditisation as these newer markets mature. For hardware vendors, it will be increasingly challenging to find differentiation, especially now with software vendors such as Microsoft and Google making a move into the hardware space.”

IDC also attributed the decline in part to a weakening economy in Australia. Sales for the end of financial year did not spur as much consumer spending as in past years, it said.

Also, Apple saw its share decline amid growth by Android and Windows tablets, IDC said. Most of the Android growth was attributable to Samsung tablets, it said.

Hoping to increase its share in the tablet market, Microsoft earlier today announced the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2. The new Windows tablets are due to arrive next month in Australia.

Follow Adam Bender on Twitter: @WatchAdam

Follow Techworld Australia on Twitter: @Techworld_AU

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