If you judge market share by Web usage, Windows tablets have failed. A new report by the online ad network Chitika finds that they account for one percent of all Web tablet traffic, compared to 84.3 percent for iPads. Worse yet, the numbers haven't budged for months.
The numbers are grim for Microsoft in the latest Chitika report. iPads account for 84.3 percent of Web tablet traffic, and various Android tablets account for most of the rest. As for Windows, Microsoft's Surface tablets account for a mere 0.5 percent of traffic, and the Acer Iconia accounts for another 0.5 percent. And that's it. And that's the best-case scenario, because Acer has two types of Iconia tablets, Windows ones, and Android ones, and Chitika doesn't break them out. So the Windows Iconia tablets likely have less than 0.5 percent market share, putting Windows at under one percent.
The numbers haven't budged for months. In March and April, Iconia and Surface traffic accounted for one percent of tablet traffic, and in May 0.9 percent.
Web traffic doesn't necessarily account for overall tablet usage, because as Computerworld points out, people spend more time using apps on tablets than they do browsing the Web. The mobile analytics firm Flurry claims that people spend 80 percent of their time on smartphones and tablets using apps, and 20 percent browsing the Web.
But Windows tablets lag far behind Android and iOS there as well. As of July 7, the Windows Store had about 100,000 apps in it, according to WinBeta, but Google just announced that there are now one million apps in Google Play. In its most recent earnings call, Apple said there were 900,000 apps available for iOS.
The Web usage numbers shouldn't be a significant surprise to anyone. The RT-based Surface is selling so poorly that Microsoft recently had to write off $900 million due to unsold inventory. And an IDC report says that in the most recent quarter, Microsoft sold only a combined 900,000 Surface and Surface Pro tablets.
Clearly, Microsoft's tablet strategy is failing. Given that Microsoft has refocused itself as a devices-and-services company, it's bad news that what may be its most important device is selling so poorly. Unless the company can come up with a winning tablet strategy, its recent reorganization won't help a bit.