ipad2Apple iPad users were responsible for a whopping 79.9 percent of Web traffic from North America’s population of media tablets in September. That’s actually down from 81 percent a year ago, but 1.9 percentage points higher than this past July, according to online advertising network operator Chitika.

The amount of North American Web traffic from tablets for second and third-ranked U.S. tablet providers Amazon and Samsung, respectively also posted small share drops in 3Q on a sequential quarterly basis. To come up with these market insights Chitika Insights sampled tens of millions of U.S. and Canadian tablet-based online ad impressions through the Chitika Ad Network.

Tablet Traffic Share
With a 0.9 percent increase, Samsung tablet users drove the largest gain in year-over-year tablet usage share across the U.S. and Canada, according to Chitika. “The Korean device maker released six new tablet models in North America through the first seven months of 2014, double the number released during all of 2013,” Chitika noted.

Microsoft (+0.6 percent) and Verizon (+0.5 percent) experienced the second and third-largest gains in North American tablet usage share. “Microsoft’s increase, which does not include traffic from the more laptop-like Surface Pro models, benefited from nearly a year’s worth of Surface 2 purchases, as that tablet went on sale in October 2013,” Chitika commented.

“Verizon’s Ellipsis tablet hit store shelves in November 2013, and seems to have experienced a good deal of success despite being the first tablet to sport the Verizon brand name – a testament to the carrier’s sales strategy for the device.”

Though dropping on a sequential quarterly basis, Apple tablet users generated the largest year-over-year gain in North America tablet usage share. “A variety of larger retailers including Best Buy, Target and Staples discounted iPad Mini and Air models leading up to the release of two new iPads early this fall,” Chitika highlighted, “which may have contributed to the recent share rise.” Though Apple has reported global iPad sales have been trending lower, “this doesn’t seem to be quite as true domestically, as IDC notes that the U.S. is driving growth in the tablet market in general,” Chitika added.

The share of tablet-driven North American Web traffic generated by Amazon Kindle users held steady at 6.7 percent year-over-year in September 2014. Chitika anticipates a pick-up this holiday season as Amazon “refreshes nearly its entire tablet line-up.”

“With Amazon, Apple, Google, Sony, and other brands all overhauling one or more of their tablet offerings in advance of the 2014 holiday shopping season, the North American market remains tremendously competitive,” Chitika writes.

“We do expect the fallout from these developments to manifest themselves most dramatically directly following the Christmas holiday, but the usage share volatility that traditionally accompanies this time period means that early January may yield the most accurate picture of the post-holiday North American tablet ecosystem.”