Tablet market booming in emerging SEA

Dylan Bushell-Embling
02 May 2012

South East Asia's emerging markets are developing a voracious appetite for tablets, with the combined value of the market nearing $1 billion in 2011.

Research firm GfK Asia has estimated that the tablet market in Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam was worth $962 million during the year.

Five out of six of these markets demonstrated consistent expansion throughout the year, with sales in Indonesia nearly doubling during the fourth quarter.

But Malaysia stayed the largest market for tablets in the region, with total revenue reaching $374 million for the year.

Android is the most popular tablet OS in the region, accounting for nearly two in three tablets sold. Over 1 million Android tablets were sold across the six countries during the year.

“Tablet sales, which started off on a slower note at the beginning of the year, [have] definitely taken off in this part of the world,” GfK Asia account director for digital technology Gerald Tan said.

He attributed the Q4 sales surge in Indonesia as resulting from “several key manufacturers [successfully] stepping up their marketing and distribution efforts” during the quarter.

Price is meanwhile the main factor for Android's success in the region, Tan said. The average cost of an Android tablet was $531 in 2011, compared to a $676 average price tag for tablets using other platforms.

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