According to a new IDC report, more users are turning to tablets with voice calling capabilities in Asia as compared to the large screen smartphones, also known as phablets. The reports shows that over 60% y-o-y growth in number of tablets shipped in this category, which are also 100% Android-based.
According to IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker report, there were 13.8 million units of tablets (7-inch) shipped in the Asia/Pacific excluding Japan (APeJ) region, in Q2 2014, of which nearly 25% (around 3.5 million units) had voice calling over cellular networks as an option built-in to the device.
Avinash K. Sundaram, Senior Market Analyst of Client Devices team at IDC Asia/Pacific says, “Tablets that allow voice calls over cell networks have been around for a while now, as the first generation of Samsung Tabs did have that option, albeit only activated through a Bluetooth headset.”
There has been a huge surge in terms of both shipments and vendors since the beginning of this year, with shipments reaching close to 50% by share of overall markets in emerging countries like India and Indonesia.
"This shift highlights the sustained interest among consumers, at least in emerging markets, to have a single mobile device for all their needs — be it watching movies and soap operas, taking pictures, texting or making calls, even if the device has a huge 7” screen on it. It also helps that these devices are quite affordable, playing in the entry-to-mainstream price bands in most markets,” notes IDC analyst Avinash K. Sundaram in a statement.
He adds that the trend of Android tablets being used as a mobile device in emerging markets will continue to gather momentum, driven by the cost advantage. Electronic giant Samsung, HP and Asus are already offering affordable tablets with voice calling in emerging markets.
“For now, it does look like the Asian love for bigger screens is set to continue,” Sundaram finishes.