google amazon money

Ouch… 54% of all Android tablets in the US have little to do with Android, or at least, to Google’s vision for Android.

According to a comScore report released this week, Amazon’s wildly successful tablet accounts for more than half of the web traffic generated by Americans that tout an Android tablet. On a distant second place, comes the Samsung Galaxy Tab family (yes, the whole family), which accrued a little over 15% of the market. The Motorola Xoom comes third, with 7%, while the rest of the manufacturers boast figures that are close to being statistically insignificant.

Here’s the table if you care to analyze it.

U.S. Market Share of Android Tablets by Unique Devices
Dec-2011, Jan-2012, Feb-2012
Total U.S.
Source: comScore Device Essentials*
% Share of Android Tablets
Dec-11 Jan-12 Feb-12
Amazon Kindle Fire 29.4% 41.8% 54.4%
Samsung Galaxy Tab Family 23.8% 19.1% 15.4%
Motorola Xoom 11.8% 9.0% 7.0%
Asus Transformer 6.4% 6.2% 6.3%
Toshiba AT100 7.1% 7.0% 5.7%
Acer Picasso 6.0% 5.2% 4.3%
Acer Iconia 2.8% 2.6% 2.1%
Dell Streak 2.2% 1.7% 1.3%
Lenovo IdeaPad Tablet K1 0.7% 0.9% 1.2%
Sony Tablet S 0.9% 0.8% 0.7%
Other 8.9% 5.6% 1.6%

As you can see, the Kindle Fire took the States by storm (uh, firestorm?) at the end of last year and in the first quarter of 2012, taking the crown in the most categorical manner possible.

If I read the figures correctly, only Lenovo was able to increase its market share, going from a tiny 0.7% to a puny 1.2%. Interestingly, we also see a crystallization of the market – if in December 2011, the Other category accounted for almost nine percent of the market, in February, the collective share of all other tablets has plummeted to 1.6%. This probably because the Other category comprises the cheapest slates, the price range where the Kindle Fire is the uncontested (yet) king of the hill.

comScore’s survey brings us to one of Google’s biggest problems these days – it doesn’t control (and it makes virtually no money from) the hottest Android tablet on the market. Amazon’s  heavily modded Android is nothing like Google’s Android, and most worrying for Page and Co, it doesn’t integrate Google’s money-making products.

This essentially has Google playing the role of a benefactor that kindly gives away his (hers, its?) time away for the sake of the community at large, without any profit. A nice story, yes, but little to show to the investors.

This is precisely the reason why Google is so keen to come with an amazingly cheap tablet of its own, this summer. As many have speculated, Google’s Nexus tablet (or whatever it will be called) has little to do with the towering giant that is the iPad. It’s rather a weapon meant to be used in a civil war, against the Android-running Kindle Fire and the slew of new slates that Jeff Bezos is planning for this summer.

Interesting times ahead, don’t you agree?

Bogdan Petrovan
Bogdan is the European Managing Editor of Android Authority. He loves tech, travel, and fantasy. He wishes he had more time for two of those things. Bogdan's phone is a Nexus 6P.
  • Robhimself79

    I really would prefer a Google branded transformer style tablet but I don’t think that’s happening ever.

    • Dripping Metal

      what your refering to IS the google nexus tablet… asus is working all the hardware for it. essentially its a asus transformer except in the 7in form factor, and around the $200 mark… its going to be awesome

      • Robhimself79

        I know Asus is building it but I really want it to have the dock feature. I’m sure this will be a great tablet though.

  • LenReinhart

    I am waiting for the Nexus Tablet, but if it drops to two core from four, I’ll pass.

    • Does the # of cores really matter or is it more important what it’s like to use one and how well it runs existing apps?

      • LenReinhart

        If I wanted two cores I’d buy a Kindle Fire.

        • William Furr

          Then why don’t you? It runs every app I have thrown at it just fine. Since clearly every two core tablet is identical.

          Fixating on the number of cores is like saying “I don’t care how fast your turbocharged inline 4 cylinder car is, I have to have a V8.”

          • LenReinhart

            I am a computer systems engineer and know what to do with the cores. I have plans for them. Like I said – If I wanted two cores I would buy two cores. As a pure user, what you said is fine. If it does what you want and are happy, what more could you ask.

  • dataninja

    This is why MS doesn’t give away OS’s.

  • Jan

    This is why Google should be using their muscle to promote all the paid-apps on Google Play that they get a 30% cut out of rather than nickel-and-diming off of all those crap apps…

  • Jmcdermott53

    Google needs to have people look at the Nexus Tablet as the clearly dominant 7″ tablet with specs and quality. That means Tegra 3, SD card supplemented by extra google drive space and a high quality screen. If they can do this at $199, people won’t even remember what a kindle fire is.