Forget the Nook, Amazon’s Kindle Fire has already blown that tablet device away with 335% growth in Google search interest during the last quarter of 2011 compared to the Nook’s 150% search interest growth. Fueling growth for both brands was the holiday season, but there is no doubt that the Kindle Fire’s low price tag attracted a lot of buzz and a lot of sales after it debuted.
The Nook isn’t the only tablet feeling pressure from the Kindle Fire. Apple’s dominance won’t be challenged in the near future, and the iPad will stay the market leader. However, it will continually lose market share to new competitors and lower-priced tablet devices. Emarketer estimates that iPad market share will drop from 83% in 2011 to 68% in 2014.
In 2011, 3.9 million Kindle Fire devices were sold compared to 18.6 million iPads. The total tablet market in 2011 reached 65 million units, but market research firm IHS iSuppli expects that number will grow to 287 million units by 2015.
If the Kindle Fire’s early success is any indication, there are plenty of opportunities for non-Apple tablet devices to steal additional market share from the leader. For example, Barclay’s Capital estimates that in 2011, 5.5 million Kindle Fire units were sold (higher than the IHS iSuppli data) and expects that number to increase to 27.8 million in 2014.
With rumored launches of a Kindle Fire device with a larger screen and a Google tablet coming in 2012, the tablet market is wide open to new competition. And with all of that competition comes better products and better prices for consumers.
While tablet device sales continue to skyrocket, advertisers see growing opportunities to leverage the content consumers view on those devices. In fact, Barclay’s estimates that Amazon Kindle Fire content revenues reached $38.5 million in 2011 and could grow to nearly $1 billion in 2012 and over $5 billion by 2014.
It’s a changing world for content publishing, content consumption, and content monetization. To date, it appears that consumers have benefited greatly with better access to the information they want and need anytime they want or need it. The next step in this evolution will undoubtedly include a battle between content publishers and device manufacturers as each party tries to get its fair share of the ROI potential that content consumption via tablets offers. Who do you think will win? Leave a comment and share your prediction.
Image: Brian Sawyer