tablet_touch_screenGlobal shipments of touch-screen display panels used in media tablets more than doubled in 1Q 2013, fueled by “booming demand for low-priced 7.x-inch products. Totaling 45.2 million units in 1Q, global shipments of capacitive touch screen displays for media tablets rose 111.9% year-over-year, down 13% quarter-to-quarter from a typical, seasonally slow 4Q 2012,” according to the latest report from IHS.

“Sales of smaller-sized tablets are rising at a rapid rate, driving shipments of capacitive touch screen displays ranking in size from 7- to 8-inches,” commented Duke Yi, senior manager for display components and materials research at IHS.

“These tablets are inexpensive, with pricing at $199, making them popular among consumers. With the level of competition increasing in both the tablet and panel markets, pricing is expected to continue to decline, boosting shipments of displays and end products in this size range.”

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Manufacturers’ margins are being squeezed as their number increases, IHS analysts note in the market research and consultancy’s “Tablet PC Touch Panel Shipment Database” report. The average selling price (ASP) of 7.0-inch tablet touch panels dropped to $15.60 year-over-year in 1Q, down 16% from 1Q 2012’s $18.60 and 7.5% from 4Q’s price.

Among suppliers, TPK – whose clients include Apple, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Microsoft and Asus – led the market, capturing 29% of the global market for tablet touch screens. Foxconn subsidiary GIS, continued to gain ground in 1Q with a 13.3% market share, up from 12.8% in 4Q 2012, supported by a growing share of panels for the iPad and iPad mini, as well as supplying touch screen panels for the 8.9-inch Amazon Kindle Fire HD.

Image courtesy of flickr user ebayink.

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