The global tablet market may be much as much as 50 percent larger than most estimates thanks to increasing numbers of "Shanzhai" tablets produced in China.
According to sources in Shenzhen, Allwinner holds as much as 60
percent of the white box market and shipped 3.5 million apps processors in August alone. Allwinner is
said to have shipped 5 million apps processors in October,
generating $30 million revenue (at a $6 average selling price). If
The momentum behind white box tablet production in
Shenzhen is building. Chinese sources now believe shipments have climbed from 6 million units in August to 9 million in October.
Who’s buying all these tablets?
A source in Beijing describes them as “tablets shipped by no-name brands
at about $50.” The end market is not necessarily China, but “mostly
emerging economies including Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Eastern
Europe, South America and Africa, etc.” He added that Chinese consumers "have
similar tastes and demands as those living in the developed world. They
don’t really buy these low-end tablets. They buy iPad or Samsung.”
If true, we may need to rethink not just the size of the booming tablet
market, but the consumer revolution triggered by the tablet market well beyond China's border.
The lack of recognizable brand
names makes it that much harder to track unit
shipments. Plus, chip shipment figures can be inflated or double-counted. Then there is China's vast
Even taking all of those factors in
account, the explosion of tablets in emerging markets is no mirage –
and it might be spreading much faster than any one imagined.
For example, one source in Shenzhen estimates that annual shipment of white box tablets this year could hit 50 million units.