Tablet demand is projected to rise in the runup to Christmas, with both Android and iOS form factors set to benefit, Context research confirms.
Marie-Christine Pygott, senior analyst at Context, said the growth was across Western Europe, including Poland, and making for a spectacular 88.2 per cent year-on-year expansion in Android tablet sales in October alone.
Android gadgets lead the European market, accounting for 70.1 per cent of tablets sold.
"The growing consumer demand for Android tablets, expected to last throughout Q4, has partly been driven by prices," she said.
"Android systems were more affordable to start with, but prices have been pushed down further thanks to increased competition inside the Android ecosystem leading to a greater number of devices on offer."
Apple's iOS devices have 28.3 per cent of the market, and Windows 8 just 1.1 per cent, she noted.
Pygott said the average distributor price for Android-based tablets fell from €204.10 (£169.85) last year to €184.20 in October. The largest chunk of growth was coming from the 7in segment.
In the UK specifically, average prices have fallen from €247.70 to €181.20 from 2012 to 2013.
Sales of 7in tablets soared 85.9 per cent year-on-year, comprising 47.9 per cent of all Android tablet sales in October.
Samsung remains the number one Android vendor, with its 10.1in and 7in Galaxy Tab 3 tablets ranking second and third, respectively, in terms of units sold in October.
However, Apple's iPad mini was the best-selling single product in October, while the iPad 4 came in fourth, the iPad Air fifth and the iPad 2 seventh in terms of market share, she added.
Pygott (pictured, right) said that Apple is expected to benefit from moving its product launches to the second half of the year, rather than spring.
Google's Nexus 7 is expected to perform well in the pre-Christmas period. In October, it took sixth place overall when it comes to sales through distribution across Europe, she said.
Amazon Kindles are expected to be the next-best performers, followed by a "long tail" of other vendors and own-brand devices from the likes of Tesco and Argos.
However, Pygott also warned that although consumer demand for tablets will rise in Q4, overall year-on-year growth for the category has slowed from 68.1 per cent in Q3 to 35.4 per cent in the month of October.
This is thanks to a growing base last year and partly because of new Q4 products not yet visible in distribution, she said.
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