It’s a tough job being an ‘iPad rival’ these days. Just in the last week there’s been news that Dell has discontinued their Dell Streak 5 Android tablet (though sales in the UK are continuing for now), and that Sprint has ditched plans to sell a 4G/WiMax version of the Blackberry PlayBook.
We’ve also seen recent numbers showing that sales of all iPad rivals combined are still a very small fraction of the iPad’s numbers. Just as one quick example, there were 9.25 million iPads sold last quarter, while Motorola announced for its Xoom tablet 440,000 units shipped (not necessarily sold) for the same quarter. So every five days Apple sold more iPads than there were Xoom tablets sold in a whole quarter. And keep in mind the Xoom was thought of as quite a serious contender leading up to its launch.
HP has said they now view the TouchPad as more of an enterprise-focused product, rather than a rival to the iPad in the consumer space. That’s not what their TV ads for the TouchPad suggest, and it’s not how the tablet was hyped prior to release either.
The latest promising contender on the horizon is an Amazon tablet due to be released before the end of this year. Here’s hoping it offers stiffer competition for the iPad than previous contenders have managed.