War of the Tablets: Apple's iPad, Amazon's Kindle & Microsoft's Slate

in Digital Marketing | by Ethan Lyon


By Ethan Lyon, Senior Writer

Apple is going to be a major competitor in the tablet market with its much-anticipated, iPad. Apple, Amazon and Microsoft are vying for market leadership in what is “expected to be the PC industry’s hot new category for 2010,” writes Information Week.

Apple has set the industry standard with its iPad, with a clear opportunity for market leadership. Amazon is poised to be the #2 market competitor as it adds more tablet-like features to its successful Kindle. We anticipate the Windows 7-powered HP Slate to take the #3 position in the tablet market.

Historically, Apple’s products are category game-changers (think the iPod in the MP3 market and the iPhone’s touchscreen and app store in the smartphone market). Apple has home-team advantage with its touch-screen technology and will surely deliver a higher-quality user-experience over Amazon’s Kindle and Microsoft’s Slate. If consumers are willing to pay a potentially higher price for a better user experience, then Apple will be the market leader.

Amazon’s Kindle is certainly poised to take the #2 position. Amazon is transforming its e-reader into a tablet with new features, such as internet connectivity and apps. Amazon can leverage Kindle’s existing user-base to generate revenues. The Kindle has 90% e-reader market share and analysts estimate the Kindle to reach $2 billion a year by 2012.

Microsoft is taking a different approach. Microsoft learned a hard lesson in the MP3 market with its disappointing, Zune. Instead of developing the tablet hardware, Microsoft is providing the operating system for HP’s Slate. By leveraging the leader in the PC market, Microsoft could make some traction in the table market.

Unlike the MP3 market, Apple does not have a clear leadership position — giving Microsoft and Amazon’s Kindle a fighting chance. However, the tablet is a new, cutting-edge product and Apple’s core brand competency is innovation. This inherent quality could give Apple the advantage it needs to be the market leader (promotion: e-course to boost app sales) .

The one area Amazon and Microsoft can compete, is price. Traditionally, Apple’s products are more expensive than its competitors. If consumers want a tablet, but don’t want to pay Apple’s high prices, Amazon and Microsoft generate significant market share.

  • My biggest factor is going to be the prices. I’m not a big fan of kindle ( I have a sony reader and I like it), however I am intruiged by both apple’s iPad and HP’s Slate. It will be interesting to see.

  • Apple always manages to leap to the front of the pack. The fact that Microsoft is behind Apple and Amazon is pretty interesting. What is Microsoft doing with all their money?

  • Well today was the day that Apple blessed us with the the glorious iPad. Personally it’s exactly what I thought it’d be practically a modified iTouch, I’m actually gonna wait until the future versions to pick an iPad up. I want to see one with a USB, microphone, camera and multitasking before I’ll make the jump. I especially think that a USB port is the most important feature it is missing. What do you guys think?

  • Nil

    Microsoft is going to win period…it is still wining in imp depts like OS and corporate market and losing in some irrelevent market like MP3.If slate is going to be a product corporate house than Microsoft is going to win…as the truth is Google and Apple make fancy products for rich Americans but they cannot make viable corporate products..

  • I think the new apple ipad looks great and cant wait to get one for the wife. Excellent site by the way.

  • Hello
    That is a good comparison between Apple’s iPad,Amazon’s Kindle and Microsoft.I think Apple is all about quality.I do agree that Apple’s products are more expensive.Thank you very much for giving such a good information.

  • Nice read. I also saw a video in youtube about a review on new Apple iPad. Here is the link – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EAb_yg2XF-k

  • Aaron

    How is the Apple iPad going to be the leader? It runs iPhone OS, if I’m going to buy a product I can’t fit in my pocket I’ll take a full on PC OS i.e. Windows 7.

  • Its nothing more than a big size iphone with the same functions – the phone. Useless if you ask me?!

  • Apple has just released Ipad with similar pricing and better features for their base model. Do you think this will affect the Kindle DX market? Thanks 🙂

  • I’ve been a fan of Apple for sometime, they produce products that is aesthetically beautiful while working like a champ. Alot of companies aren’t able to say that, it’s typically one or the other. Companies don’t usually take aesthetics seriously like Apple. With that being said I’ve got to say that I’m anxious about the new Tablet. One thing I question though, is it too soon? I’m afraid that this may be ahead of our time. What do you think?

  • Couldn’t agree with you more. I’m stoked for the Ipad though!Thanks!

  • This is a good site. I come here many times and i see always good updates, thanks!

  • I’ve been a fan of Apple for sometime, they produce gadgets that is visually beautiful while working like a everytime I use it. Alot of companies aren’t like that, it’s usually one or the other. Businesses don’t usually take aesthetics seriously like Apple. With that said I’ve got to say that I’m anxious about the new Tablet. One thing I question though, is it too soon? I think that this product may be ahead of its time. What do you think?

  • I cannot wait to get my Apple iPad pre-ordered. They look amazing. I am just in two minds whether to get the wifi or the 3g and which size to get.

  • This is going to be bigger than most people think. The iPad will soon be integrated within all communication facets of our life.

  • Now looking at your article, we can agree that iPad is the clear winner. Kindle is losing and Microsoft slate aka courier is shelved.