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Good analysis from GigaOM on those recent Android tablet "market share" numbers.

We had some in depth discussions about this over here on +Chris Robato's thread:

Here's what I said:

"Once again, shipped NOT= sold. We'll see down the road what the actual stats are based on Web usage asf.

And by the way, *I am rooting for Android to create serious competition for the iPad, but not based on questionable stats...*

...the difference [with Apple] is that they usually sell all they can build... often there's a wait. Very little Apple stuff sitting in inventory somewhere for any length of time, while with the Android tabs, I'm not so sure...

the [recent] Hitwise/Compete/Comscore stats say that well over 90% of tablets out there are iOS, and until that number comes down, I'll have a hard time believing that Android tabs are actually grabbing significant share. If they were really seeing sell-through reaching 25-35% over the last few quarters, then that number should start to drop below 90% iPads sooner rather than later, but it hasn't yet."
/cc +Stefan Svartling +Ramon Nuez
More than one in four tablets last quarter ran on the Google Android platform says Strategy Analytics, dropping Apple's iPad market share to two-thirds of all tablets. But the data is based on shipped...
Alex Schleber's profile photoKim Nilsson's profile photoJohn Blossom's profile photo
Yes, it would be easier to compare numbers, if they were actually on the same fact.
+Kim Nilsson no kidding. But it's all part of the game.

Usually I don't put that much stock in the Web traffic metrics companies like Hitwise in terms of their absolute numbers, but as long as you are comparing Apples to Apples their numbers can serve to indicate trends, or, as in this case, the relative share of different devices, rather well.

Their statistical methods are definitely good enough here to make it next to impossible that Honeycomb tablets have say an overall 15% share, when their numbers are showing a > 5% share...
+Kim Nilsson I just looked up some additional numbers. Apple had sold ~ 25M iPads through June 2011 (their fiscal "Q3"), and then 11.1M in their Q4, as just reported e.g. here:

So that takes us to 36 Million iPads total. (The number for this past Q4 quarter is actually pretty amazing, pointing to very strong back-to-school sales, asf.)

Now there would have to be 3.6M Honeycomb-based tablets sold for 10% share, 7.2M for 20%, asf. Even counting all early Android 2.2 and 2.3 tablets including the Nook Color, Google's head of Android Andy Rubin let it slip that they think there are just over 6M out there. So that would put it just above 15% share, however there is a possibility that e.g. all most of the Nook Colors are not being used to access the Web, and various others are not using showing up in the Web stats analytics.

/cc +Stefan Svartling
Ah, thank you for finding recent and as-real-as-can-be numbers.
A fair critique, but to be honest it's pretty much exactly the same sort of critique that was leveled at Android phone sales early in its growth pattern. While it's true that the supply of Android tablets probably exceeds demand at this point, that's in large part because there are so many different tablets that are being stocked. Retailers cover their bases and want to have inventory on hand, because it's more difficult to capture a customer who didn't find something in stock than to blow out excess inventory later and capture new customers anyway - at which point Android wins anyway. So while I agree that sold units are lower, I'd say that it's not a very meaningful analysis either way, especially given that it's before holiday sales and post-holiday blowout sales are complete. Let's see what things look like next June - my guess is that we'll see something like a 70/30 ratio of sold Apple tablets versus Android.
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