The iPad effect will fade away and Apple will barely hold on to its market dominance, according to industry observers. The latest report from NPD Group estimates that by 2017, rival tablets running on Android and Windows will eat up iPad's market share.
Overall, the global tablet market is expected to grow rapidly in the next few years. Shipments are predicted to rise from 81.6 million units in 2011, to 424.9 million units in 2017.
Apple currently has a 68 per cent share of the tablet market, according to the latest quarterly report. Analysts expect Apple to enjoy this dominance through 2012 (with Apple's share reaching 72 per cent) and 2013.
During this time, the market will mature and Apple's rivals will grow stronger. "We expect the landscape to change dramatically, giving consumers more choices, which will drive demand for more devices," points out NPD DisplaySearch Senior Analyst Richard Shim.
In 2017, the forecasts point to Apple's market share being at 50.9 per cent and Android at 40.5 per cent, almost double its current percentage. Windows-based tablets will rise even more, from the 1.5 per cent it currently is, to 7.5 per cent.