Sales of the ‘smartbooks’ category (i.e. like the iPad) are expected to grow from 3.65 million in 2010 to nearly 50 million in 2014, or over 50% of all embedded device sales, according to the latest forecasts from Informa Telecoms & Media analysts.
The losers will be dedicated e-readers, the winners: multifunctional portable devices like the iPad and Android-driven Samsung Galaxy Tab.
Their reasoning with this conclusion is that e-book content is now available on most multifunctional devices like mobiles and tablets, and work “well enough” as book readers, while having other functions.
The list of smaller e-reader players experiencing problems is growing longer, like Skiff, iRex and Plastic Logic.
Informa expects mobile broadband e-reader sales will peak at 14 million units in 2013, before falling by 7% in 2014 as the segment faces increased competition from a wide range of consumer electronic devices including cheaper non-connected models, like the Kobo and new Kindle WiFi.