China tablet PC makers offer stiff competition to iPad

China suppliers of tablet PCs are adding value with more
functions and dropping prices to beat competition, as they ride on the success
of the iPad’s popularity, according to Global Sources.

The report covers the major types of tablet PCs produced
in China, namely the 7-, 8-, 9.7- and 10-inch variants. It shows manufacturers
boosting competitiveness by incorporating value enhancements such as webcams,
e-book readers and GPS functions to rival the iPad.

Amid robust demand, China’s output of tablet PCs is
expected to surge 20 to 30 percent this year from nearly 2 million units in
2010. With the sector looking attractive, new suppliers are entering the line.

In fact, just one month after the iPad was first launched
60 percent of China’s netbook manufacturers and many of its portable media
player suppliers started rolling out tablet PCs as cost-effective alternatives.

Companies with these manufacturing backgrounds can hit
the ground running with their existing R&D and production capability in
consumer electronics and computer products,” said, Livia Yip, publisher of the

According to the report, 7-inch models still dominate the
latest releases, thanks to their lower price and partly because of their appeal
to the growing youth market. Even so, suppliers are expanding production to
more units with larger touchscreens under efforts to increase orders.

“Estimates see 7-inch models ebbing to a 60 percent
production share, as 8- and 9.7-inch versions climb to 15 percent and 10
percent, respectively,” Yip added.

Tablets PCs reveal that manufacturers’ strategies
for overcoming stiff competition include price cuts and greater marketing
efforts. Of suppliers surveyed, two-thirds are lowering quotes. Reductions
range generally between 5 and 10 percent, but some companies seek an edge with
cuts as deep as 15 percent, according to China Sourcing Report.

By Team
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