Though Apple bet big on its larger iPad, it now seems that there is a large consumer segment drawn to smaller, less expensive tablet devices. As Amazon's 7-inch Kindle Fire tablets and Google's Nexus 7 tablet began to take off, Apple reacted swiftly with the iPad Mini. The mini-tablet market is expected to grow significantly this year, with the refreshed Nexus 7 expected to sell over 3.5 million units by the end of 2013. The tablets themselves are also expected to grow, with 8-inch tablets predicted for the market this fall.
A new report this week from DigiTimes also suggests that the popularity of mini-tablets could be cannibalizing part of the full-size tablet market. The report's unnamed "Taiwan based supply chain makers" stated that Samsung has reduced its orders for components found in its Galaxy Note 10.1 tablets. The larger tablets have reportedly sold under the Korean manufacturer's expectations.
The report also states that Samsun'g Galaxy Tab 7-inch tablets have made up around 70% of the company's 17 million tablets shipped so far this year.
DigiTimes' sources stated that Samsung will have to re-tool its tablet strategy, and no other tech company is more prepared to do so. Samsung already offers an 8-inch tablet model, and its flagship Galaxy smartphone lineup now comes in a wide variety of sizes. Whatever the size sweet spot for tablets ends up being, Samsung will likely be one of the first manufacturers to offer a tablet in that size.
(Image courtesy Samsung)