PHOTO- GfK Malaysia general manager Jennifer Chan.
According to global market research firm GfK, the demand for tablets has quintupled in the last quarter of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010, and about 656,000 tablets have been sold during 2011.
Speaking on 21 March 2012, GfK Malaysia general manager Jennifer Chan said this demand for tablets was driven by a more rapid, always-connected and mobile lifestyle as well as the instant accessibility of such devices.
"By the end of last year, retail tracking figures for tablets reflected almost on par volume sales with retail laptops, even though it had only been in the market for just over a year," said Chan. "Our findings have affirmed that tablets are enjoying widespread acceptance in Malaysia."
"Since the launch of tablets in mid-2010, take up rate has been mounting rapidly with sales rising on a month-to-month basis, so much that today's sales have almost come head to head with laptops-a computing device that is seen as the tablet's closest competitor," she said.
"In the latest January 2012 GfK Malaysia findings of the portable IT technology category, the sales proportion of tablets to notebooks was around 48:52," said Chan. "This is an 18 percentage point increase for tablets, as compared to the same period a year ago. While the tablets market totalled around US$44 million in the final quarter of 2010, it has grown substantially to be worth more than US$140 million a year later."
She said that since 2010, competition has been intense among manufacturers, who have started introducing more tablet models into the market. "Network operators have also been driving sales by providing subsidies for tablet packages that come with 3G data services. As such, prices of tablets are becoming increasingly affordable these days."
"The Malaysian government continual efforts to deepen Internet penetration, such as by increasing public wi-fi hotspots and cutting tax on broadband subscription, have been helping to generate high pick up rate for Internet-enabled hardware," said Chan. "At the same time, today's demanding consumers seeking consistently high performance, quality photos capture and speedy media experience in a convenient portable form means there is still much more room for development for tablets in this tech hungry market!"
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.