The tablet market is in a funk, sales seem to be on a terminal decline and even industry leader Apple has seen its iPad sales plummet. However, there is one area of the slate market that is doing well and growing, the hybrid market, which includes devices that are both laptop and tablet.
The Surface 3, Surface Book, and Surface Pro 4 occupy this category and according to research carried out by 1010data, Microsoft's hybrids are doing well. That's interesting considering the Surface line certainly had a rocky first few years on the market, costing Microsoft billions in the process.
It seems that consumers are finally starting to click with the idea of having an ultra-portable computer with high end hardware that can also be carried around as a tablet. 1010data studies the spending habits of consumers to reach a result on market share and trends, and the company says the Surface Book increased its market by 9% during the first quarter.
That was a 25% year-on-year rise, while the Surface line contributed to 33% of all tablet sales coming from hybrids. The data seems to mirror Microsoft's own results, with the company announcing in its earnings call last month that income from the Surface line grew 61% in the last quarter.
Apple remains a threat to further Surface growth, especially with the 9.7-inch iPad Pro now available and offering arguably a more consumer friendly package, as well as a more coveted logo.
On the Windows 10 platform Surface performance could be slowed by rivals such as Huawei's MateBook and Samsung's Galaxy TabPro S. Sure, these devices are not as good as the Surface Pro 4, but they are an alternative for consumers. A welcome alternative too according to Microsoft, with the company saying it wants OEMs to provide more competition to boost the Windows 10 platform.