If you thought that tablets might have reached their peak as a result of their longer replacement cycles, you could be in for a surprise. According to the latest data by International Data Corporation (IDC), tablet shipments grew by 77.3% year-on-year in Middle East and Africa (MEA).

In terms of numbers, a total of 4 million units were shipped in the first quarter of this year.

“Most other regions around the world experienced a year-on-year slowdown in growth during Q1 2014, or even an overall decline,” says Adriana Rangel, research director at IDC.

“But the MEA tablet market continues to expand tremendously, a trend that can primarily be attributed to the additional focus that vendors have placed on this region due to numerous country markets not reaching their full potential, particularly in Africa.”

To no surprise, Samsung took the lead in the market as they launched a number of new tablets like the Galaxy Note Pro 12.2. Of the 4 million units, Samsung was responsible for over 970 000 units, while Apple shipped over 750 000 units. Turkish brand General Mobile shipped the third most tablets with over 350 000 units.

Victoria Mendes, a research analyst at IDC says that screen size plays a huge role in the decision-making process for a tablet, and while 7” screens will continue to grow, there will also be a demand for bigger sizes.

“In terms of screen sizes, 7” and 8” tablets will continue to dominate the market throughout 2014. However, we expect to see a good uptake of 10” and 11” inch tablets during the year as a number of the large education initiatives currently underway in the region require the use of these larger devices.”

[Image – Shutterstock]
Charlie started his professional life as a motoring journalist for a community newspaper in Mpumalanga, Charlie explored different journalistic angles since his entry into the fast-paced world of publishing in 2006. While fostering a passion for the arts, Charlie developed a love for technology – both which allowed him to serve as Entertainment and Technology Editor for an online publication. Charlie has since been heavily involved in consumer technology for various websites and publications. He thoroughly enjoys World War II films and cerebral documentaries; aviation; photography and indie music. Oh yes, and he also has a rather strange obsession with collecting coffee mugs from his travels.