That’s not too bad for tablet makers. 1.2 million sold in 10 months, and that’s not including the iPad.  The quote that I found the most interesting was: “76 percent of consumers who purchased a non-Apple tablet didn’t even consider the iPad,” I t seems the iPad popularity is waning….

U.S. tablet sales, excluding iPad sales, soared to more than 1.2 million units sold from January through October and brought in $415 million in revenue at retail, according to leading market research company The NPD Group’s monthly Connected Handhelds Report. Total tablet industry sales, for both hardware and accessories, brought in nearly $700 million.

Tablet hardware sales accelerated throughout the year with each quarter performing better than the prior quarter. Third quarter sales were two times that of second quarter sales and second quarter sales were three times better than first quarter.

“If you look at the tablet market without Apple there are a number of high-profile brands vying for that number two spot,” said Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD. “According to NPD’s Consumer Tracking Service, 76 percent of consumers who purchased a non-Apple tablet didn’t even consider the iPad, an indication that a large group of consumers are looking for alternatives, and an opportunity for the rest of the market to grow their business.”

PC manufacturers are dominant in the tablet space, as four of the top five tablet brands already have a strong U.S. consumer PC presence. Only two of the top five brands play in the smartphone market.

“The market is filled with long-time PC and phone brands as well as low-cost entrants,” stated Baker. “With a limited amount of shelf space and challenges in overcoming the iPads first mover strength, not all brands will be successful.”

It’s not just the PC and smartphone manufacturers that stand to gain from the growing tablet market, accessory manufacturers do as well. One third of total tablet market revenue through the third quarter was from accessories and two-thirds of that was sales of cases and screen protectors.

“Consumers are investing in expensive portable devices that they want to protect so it’s not surprising that cases and screen protectors are driving in a significant amount of revenue,” said Baker. “This is a great opportunity for the accessory manufacturers already in the market to ramp up products and designs and an opportunity for newcomers to get into a fast-growing segment.”

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    • Exactly.  And 76% of 1.2 Million is about the same amount of people who BOUGHT iPads per week during that 10 month period…. waning interest in iPads just because the minority of purchases weren’t iPads? Please… that’s a lame assessment.

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  2. For after sales support, I agree. Apple is tops and this I know from xcierpenee. But for hardware that’s tough. The iPhone 4 is a magnificent piece of kit (as I believe you Brits say) and elegant all around, problems notwithstanding. But I’ve always been impressed with the quality of Nokia phones, even though I can’t stand the Symbian software. HTC seems to run the gamut from Mercedes to Yugo, but their Mercedes class stuff is 1st rate. The only Samsung phone I ever owned was the Focus I owned briefly, but other than the gorgeous screen, I wasn’t much impressed by its build quality. Sony also tends to make some stunning hardware look at how impressed you are with the from of the Arc and I find my Xperia X10 to be a quality piece of work. Actually, I am thinking that building quality hardware is relatively easy if a company wants to put the effort into it. But after-sales support is where most companies fall on their faces and I truly don’t recall having having seen any company get that as right as Apple does. Not that they don’t have their fails they sure do as any company that large will. But walk into an Apple store and go to the Genius Bar and there’s a far better chance you’ll walk away impressed than not. (I can’t speak to phone support as I’ve never used it).

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