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Asustek raises 2012 tablet target on Nexus 7 demand

2012/08/29 19:44:50

Taipei, Aug. 29 (CNA) Taiwan's Asustek Computer Inc. raised its tablet computer shipment target for 2012 by 67 percent Wednesday, thanks to strong demand for the Nexus 7, its tablet that is co-branded with Google Inc.

The firm expects to ship 5 million tablets this year, higher than its previous forecast of 3 million units, Asustek CEO Jerry Shen said during an investor conference.

"We found that the launch of the Nexus 7 benefits our brand value a lot," he said. "The product will be available worldwide in September and its contributions to our revenue should be apparent during the fourth quarter."

Asustek sold 600,000 and 800,000 tablet PCs in the first and second quarters respectively. The company aims to ship more than 2 million tablets between July and September, an increase of over 150 percent from the second quarter.

Given that the expected launch of Apple Inc.'s iPad mini later this year could be a threat to Asustek's tablet sales, the company is projected to ship more tablets in the fourth quarter than in the third quarter, Shen said.

He expressed hope that Asustek will become the world's No. 1 maker of tablets running on Google's Android operating system by the end of 2012 in terms of market share.

For tablets powered by Microsoft Corp.'s new Windows 8, Shen said Asustek will rank among the top three vendors in the fourth quarter of this year.

On June 27, Google and Asustek unveiled the Nexus 7, the world's first 7-inch quad-core tablet, with a price tag of US$199, to break into the less expensive Android tablet market.

The move was seen by analysts as an attempt by the two companies to take on Amazon's Kindle Fire, which is sold with lower margins on its hardware to attract more consumer spending on digital content.

The Nexus 7 will go on sale in Taiwan before the middle of September, Shen said, without giving any specifics on the local price or a launch date.

(By Jeffrey Wu)