Supply chain
Digitimes Research: Global tablet shipments grow 16.9% sequentially in 4Q14
Jim Hsiao, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei

Although white-box tablet shipments declined in the fourth quarter of 2014, global overall tablet shipments in the quarter still grew sequentiallyby 16.9% to reach 74.77 million units thanks to Apple and non-Apple first-tier vendors' strong performances, according to Digitimes Research's latest report on the global tablet industry.

With inexpensive Android-based tablets offering almost no profit, many small white-box tablet players in Southeastern China have given up the market, while large ones have turned to sell Windows-based tablets or smartphones looking for better profits. White-box tablet shipments reached only 25.2 million units in the fourth quarter of 2014, down 4.9% sequentially and 10.3% on year, figures compiled by Digitimes Research show.

Apple shipped 21.9 million tablets in the fourth quarter of 2014 because of its aggressive promotions and pricing. Apple was the largest tablet vendor worldwide in the quarter.

Second-place Samsung Electronics did not launch new products in the second half of 2014 and its promotion efforts were also weaker than expected, causing its shipments in the fourth quarter to drop compared to a year ago.

Amazon surpassed Lenovo to take third place in the fourth quarter of 2014 because of strong sales for its inexpensive tablets. Lenovo and Asustek Computer, ranked number four and five, respectively, both recorded weaker-than-expected shipments in the quarter.

As for Taiwan ODMs' tablet shipments, Foxconn Electronics (Hon Hai Precision Industry) and Compal Electronics oth saw significant shipment growths in the fourth quarter of 2014. However, Pegatron Technology's shipments dropped in the quarter as Apple started gradually to shift its iPad mini orders from Pegatron to Compal.

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