Lenovo is alleging that Samsung might have shipped 1 million Galaxy Tabs in 2010 but it only sold 20,000 of them. While it is still an allegation by a rival company, it sounds like a serious one affecting the whole ecosystem. Lenovo which announced a $199 Android tablet will also be affected if only 20000 Galaxy Tabs were sold. After all, Galaxy Tab has been the symbol of Android tablets for quite some time.
While the allegation by Lenovo is new, allegations or mystery surrounding Android tablet sales is nothing new. After Google announced that it is activating 550,000 Android devices per day and there are a total of 130 million Android devices running wild, a quick calculation tying up on the number of Android devices with large screens accessing Android market and the total Android devices out there has revealed that there are just 1.21 million Android tablets versus 28.73 million iPads in July, 2011.
The beauty of Android tablet allegations is no one can either prove it or disprove it.
India tablet sales
In a recent CMRI report, for the period of November 2010 to March 2011 a total of 85000 tablets were shipped to India and of which 72000 are Samsung Galaxy Tabs. While analyzing that report, I failed to mention that the 85000 tablets are shipments and not sales. How can I forget?
For Apple’s iPad we can safely assume that the shipments are equal to sales. But for Android tablets even if it is from Samsung, we can’t assume that shipments are equal to sales.
This shipments != sales jargon is too confusing? I recommend reading Shipments are not equal to sales, to de-jargon this.
Stuck in the channel
With more than 100 tablet manufacturers and millions of tablets coming out of Shenzen factories, what is happening to Android tablets? My strong guess is, these tablets are stuck on the channel. They could be at your closest retailers or in some warehouses waiting for a price drop or a some kind of guarantee from the manufacturers to cover the retailer and distributor’s losses.
So how many Galaxy Tabs did Samsung sell in 2010? We might never know unless Samsung comes clean.