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Xmas heralds bumper tablet shipments

Q3 sales down, Q4 to make up and then some

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Is fondleslab fever fading? They might be if you're IDC, a market watcher, which had to admit that its forecast for Q3 2011 tablet shipments was almost six per cent off mark.

IDC had predicted world tablet shipments of 19.2m units for Q3, but the total actually came to 18.1m units.

Still, it said, strong demand in Q4 will take full-year shipments to 63.3m units, up from the 62.5m it previously forecast.

Apple shipped 11.1m of Q3's 18.1m tablets - 61.3 per cent of the total and up from 9.3m in Q2. Samsung took second place, taking 5.6 per cent of the market, fractionally ahead of HP's firesale-fuelled five per cent share for the WebOS-based TouchPad.

US-based Barnes & Noble will be pleased that its Nook Color put the bookseller in fourth place - its share was 4.5 per cent - ahead of Asus on four per cent.

Android's share of the tablet market was sequentially down less than a single percentage point in Q3 to 32.4 per cent, but it'll jump to 40.3 per cent in Q4 on the back of Amazon's Kindle Fire, IDC forecast.

WebOS is effectively done, and BlackBerry's share of the tablet market will drop below one per cent. That leaves Apple's iOS with 59 per cent of the market. ®

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