iPad Has the Tablet Market Sewn Up. But, the eBook Reader Market is Still Fluid

It isn’t any surprise to learn that Apple’s iPad owns the tablet market with 90% of all tablets sold in the 3rd quarter of 2010 according to IDC. I was, however, surprised to learn that while Amazon’s Kindle is by far the best selling ebook reader device, it is not the overwhelming force that the iPad is in the tablet category: The Kindle accounted for 41.5% of the ebook reader market. If asked, I would have guessed 75% of the market.

Apple’s iPad represents 90 percent of all tablets shipped; Amazon owns e-readers (ZDNet)

So, who are the other big ebook reader players? Sony, which practically invented the category, is at #4 with a 8.4% market share. Barnes and Noble, with its increasingly interesting and popular second generation Nook, is #3 with 15.4%. Who is #2? Pandigital with 16.1%. That’s right, the company probably best known for their digital photo frames has the second largest ebook reader market share. But, where are their readers? I thought they might be the manufacturer of the Nook. But, this is not the case. And a quick check of Wikipedia’s ebook reader chart oddly reveals Pandigital is not even in the list.

It looks like Pandigital’s ebook reader is from Condor Technology (which is in Wikipedia’s chart). Like the other somewhat surprising (to me) #5 in IDC’s list, Hanvon, these ebook readers are sold through a wide variety of retailers worldwide. Even more surprising to me is that both Condor and Hanvon have Windows CE based ebook products in their lineup (along with Android – Condor and Linux – Hanvon).

It looks like the ebook reader device market is still up for grabs.