Are Apple Tablets Really Killing Netbooks?

Lets start with the word NO…

By:  Jeff Bertolucci

“… ABI Research says the netbook market will not be “gravely injured” by the iPad and similar tablets, including the Samsung Galaxy Tab and Research In Motion’s BlackBerry PlayBook. “This is a rumor perpetuated by Apple fanatics,” wrote ABI Research mobile device analyst Jeff Orr in an e-mail to PCWorld.

Orr points out that annual netbook shipments continue to grow, and that the top isn’t in sight. Specifically, about 36 million netbooks shipped worldwide in 2009, and an estimated 43 million will ship in 2010. The netbook is the first ultramobile device to reach “mass-market appeal,” which Orr defines as a product that ships 40 to 50 million units annually. He acknowledges, however, that netbook sales are slowing, and says that today’s shipments don’t match the “meteoric growth” of the past two years.

In the coming years, tablets and netbooks will take divergent paths–the former focusing on entertainment, communications, and convenience, and the latter adopting a more work-friendly role. Each will carve out a niche in the personal computing landscape. One will not kill off the other, however. After netbooks succeed in boosting their processing power and adding new capabilities, they’ll appeal to users who want a lighter and smaller version of a full-size laptop.”

Questions or Comments?