iPads to Rule the Holiday Season for Apple?


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It's almost October folks, and you know what that means: It's time to get ready for the holiday season, especially if you're a company looking to rake the money in during the "everybody buy" portion of the calendar. In regards to mobile devices, some are speculating that Apple's iPad will rule the season when it comes to tablet computing purchases.

The reason for the domination is not so much because iPads are just incredibly better than their competitors; although, the survey comes across that way. From this perspective, however, public perception leads consumers to believe the iPad is the only choice for tablets out there, regardless of how many Verizon commercials we see:

In fact, I'm curious to find out how many average consumers out there can name additional tablet computing options. Android tablets are mentioned in Gartner's report, but the fact remains, they don't refer to the Android tablets by name. Instead, they refer to the operating system instead of the hardware. The same, however, is not true for Apple and the iPad.

Of course, the fact that Android is available on multiple tablets and iOS is only available on the iPad comes into play here.

Essentially, it's the iPad versus the Android offerings, and if Gartner's report is anything to go by, Apple will again reign supreme. The report reveals that worldwide tablet sales are expected to increase by 261.4 percent when compared to the 2010 numbers. While iPad's numbers essentially decreased in relation to tablet sales -- 73.4 percent in 2011, compared to 83 percent in 2010 -- the fact there was such a dramatic increase of tablet purchases makes these numbers a wash.

In fact, Apple's position in the tablet market may very well be set in stone for the foreseeable future:

"We expect Apple to maintain a market share lead throughout our forecast period by commanding more than 50 percent of the market until 2014," Carolina Milanesi, research vice president at Gartner. "This is because Apple delivers a superior and unified user experience across its hardware, software and services. Unless competitors can respond with a similar approach, challenges to Apple’s position will be minimal. Apple had the foresight to create this market and in doing that planned for it as far as component supplies such as memory and screen. This allowed Apple to bring the iPad out at a very competitive price and no compromise in experience among the different models that offer storage and connectivity options."

While Milanesi's comments are indeed glowing, it should be noted the iPad is not without its critics.

Nevertheless, it's pretty clear the iPad will continue to rule, especially during the holiday season as its competitors continue to refine their product. As a comparison, Gartner reports that Android tablets will account for 17.3 percent for overall sales in 2011. Apple, again, will command over 70 percent of the same market, and that's just with one tablet offering.

Currently, the Android OS is available on a number of different tablets, including offerings from Samsung, Acer, Sony, Asus, and HTC.