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Android takes the top spot

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Apple’s multi-year reign at the top of the consumer tablet ended in 2013 as slates running Google’s Android operating system outsold iOS based iPads for the year according to Gartner.

Sales of Android tablets accounted for 61.9% of the global market last year, nearly 121 million units sold in 2013, Gartner said on Monday.

Overall tablet vendors sold just over 195.4 million tablets with various operating systems for the year. Apple effectively created the market for consumer tablets in April 2010 with the release of the first generation iPad, but tablets running Android had gained considerable ground by 2012, when iOS held 52.8 % of the global market followed Android 45.8%.

“As the Android tablet market becomes highly commoditised, in 2014, it will be critical for vendors to focus on device experience and meaningful technology and ecosystem value—beyond just hardware and cost—to ensure brand loyalty and improved margins.”

Apple did hold onto its crown as the top individual vendor of consumer tablets, selling 70.4 million iPads in 2013 for a 36.0 per cent share of the overall market—the same as its share of the market as broken down by operating systems, since the company is the sole maker of tablets running iOS and doesn’t sell devices running other software.

Samsung came in second with 37.4 million tablets sold for 19.1 per cent of the global market

Asus (11.0 million units, 5.6 per cent share)

Amazon (9.4 million units, 4.8 per cent share)

Lenovo (6.5 million units, 3.3 per cent share)