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New Samsung tablet unlikely to hit iPad sales in Taiwan: analyst

2012/08/16 21:48:48

Taipei, Aug. 16 (CNA) South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co. launched its Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet computer in Taiwan on Thursday, but a local analyst said the new device will not affect local dominance of Apple Inc.'s iPad due to its higher pricing.

The 10.1-inch Samsung tablet, boasting a quad-core processor with 1.4 GHz clock speed and the Android 4.0 operating system, enables functions like having two apps active on a split screen and using a stylus-type pen to write and sketch on the device.

The price of the 16 GB model with Wi-Fi connectivity starts at NT$15,900 (US$529) when it goes on sale in Taiwan in late August, while the 3G version with the same storage capacity will be priced higher at NT$19,900, according to Samsung's Taiwan branch.

Despite the advanced product features, the Galaxy Note 10.1 looks unlikely to chip away at the market dominance of Apple's iPad, said Jeff Pu, a Taipei-based equity research analyst at Fubon Securities.

"Apple sets a price line of US$499 for 10-inch tablets, which has blocked the route of retreat for many other manufacturers," Pu told CNA by telephone.

"Given Apple's edge in its channels and hardware-software integration, it is hard for other makers to compete against Apple in the pricing range of US$499, unless you sell cheaper," he added.

Apple's third-generation tablet, the "new iPad," was launched in March, at a starting price of US$499 for the 16GB/Wi-Fi model.

Moreover, Google Inc.'s Android platform has been criticized for its poor support for mobile apps on tablet PCs, since most developers prefer making new apps for the hot-selling iPad, Pu said.

Two years after creating the market, Apple remains the king of all tablet makers as its global market share rose to nearly 70 percent in the second quarter of 2012, according to research firm IHS iSuppli.

The Cupertino, California-based company shipped 17 million iPad 2 and new iPad tablets during the April-June period, surging 44.1 percent from the 11.8 million units shipped in the first quarter, IHS iSuppli said.

Samsung came in second but trailed far behind with only a 9.2 percent market share, followed by Inc. at 4.2 percent, Asustek Computer Inc. at 2.8 percent and Barnes & Noble Inc. at 1.9 percent, the research firm said.

(By Jeffrey Wu)