Purchases of slate tablets, such as iPads, are declining because "end-users don't have a good enough reason to replace them," according to Jean Philippe Bouchard, IDC's research director of tablets.
This Business Insider story explains that the problem plaguing tablets is that they don't solve a pressing need that can't also be accomplished with a smartphone or PC.
I can relate to this firsthand. I bought an iPad about five years ago, back when I had a job that required more travel. Now it mostly gathers dust in my nightstand as I rely upon my smartphone and laptop.
Tablet manufacturers are shifting focus to detachable tablets, IDC says, and the line is blurring between them and PCs. A lot of computer manufacturers see tablets as an extension of their market.
"The detachable tablet segment is also considered by some manufacturers, like Apple, as a way to spur replacement cycles of the existing slate tablet installed base, " Bouchard said.
There are still plenty of people buying slate tablets, IDC says.
IDC expects over 100 million slate tablets to ship annually through 2020. And the good news is the firm predicts they will get cheaper, with an average selling price of $157 by 2020.
Worldwide Tablet Share Forecast by Product Type and OS 2015-2020
|Detachable Tablet||Android||16 percent||12 percent||20 percent|
||iOS||14 percent||38 percent||29 percent|
||Windows||70 percent||49 percent||51 percent|
|Slate Tablet||Android||72 percent||75 percent||75 percent|
||iOS||25 percent||22 percent||21 percent|
||Windows||3 percent||3 percent||4 percent|
Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker