Starmobile and Cherry Mobile Android Tablets Give Apple and Samsung Slates a Run for the Money

Apart from confirming that the Philippines is currently the fastest growing - and in effect, the most important - market for tablets in the whole of South East Asia, IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker study likewise showed that our local brands are more than capable of giving far bigger international companies some stiff competition in that device category.

598,375 tablets were shipped to the Republic of the Philippines in Q1 2014, translating to a year-on-year growth of 110% -- the highest year-on-year growth among countries in South East Asia.

According to IDC, Samsung and Apple remain to be the top tablet sellers in the Philippines, finishing at the first and second spots, respectively. However, these major international players are increasingly facing tough competition from local vendors, which are steadily gaining ground in the Philippines; Cherry Mobile and Starmobile being two of the strongest.

As you know, all of Cherry Mobile and Starmobile's current tablets run Android operating system. Some of the best-selling slates by these two companies include the Starmobile Engage 9i, Cherry Mobile Superion Probe, and Starmobile Engage 8 Quad.

Mr. Elijah Mendoza, Starmobile Product Marketing Manager, shows us Starmobile Engage 9i.

Mr. Jerome Dominguez - Associate Market Analyst at IDC Philippines - shares, "Backed by cash-rich marketing and A-list celebrity endorsements, Cherry Mobile and Starmobile continue to feed the appetite of Filipino consumers for budget-friendly tablets. The rising demand for tablets from these homegrown players will keep the Philippines tablet market on a growth trajectory in 2014."

As expected, price remains to be the primary consideration among Pinoy consumers when making a purchase -- but after-sales support has also started to become an important selling-point given that defect or "lemon" issues have been plaguing the Philippines tablet market since 2013.

"The Philippines remains a predominantly budget-conscious market for devices, which explains the high demand for budget tablets among its consumers. The growing competition between international and local tablet brands is good in that it will encourage the players to continue to innovate and improve product quality to stay ahead of the competition," Mr. Daniel Pang, Senior Research Manager for Client Devices at IDC Asia/Pacific commented about the study.

I agree. And I hope all players in the Philippine market - both local and international - continue to go at it and give one another a good run for the buck. I'm always on the side of Pinoy consumers and I know that stiff competition among all brands is what's going to give us the most value for the amount we spend on their products. Oh, and kudos to Cherry Mobile and Starmobile! Thumbs up!