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A new report suggests that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) dominance of the tablet market will continue unencumbered through 2012 and into the future. The report comes from research firm Gartner and won’t be a surprise to any who’ve been folowing the firm’s recent successes and projections of sales from other analysts.

The report sees Apple’s device beating sales by second place Google Inc’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android and third place Microsoft Corporation’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows by a large margin. The eventual figures are projected to give Apple a 61% share of sales in 2012.

gartner tablet chart of 2016

That would have the Cupertino firm selling almost 73 million devices this year a number that would leave nobody arguing with the firm’s preeminence in the tablet market.

Comparatively the forecast shows 38 million Android devices being shipped this year with Windows tablets in a distant third at 5 million. The report, which covers up to 2016, sees Apple maintaining a large rise in sales of the devices in the coming years.

According to projections the company will ship almost 100 million devices next year, a huge amount, which shows the popularity of tablets increasing dramatically and the market expanding accordingly.

The devices are set to rival PCs as the primary computing device in many areas in the coming years as the industry completely shifts to a new more mobile paradigm. Apple will be the main beneficiary ceteris paribus and the company’s shareholders will not be disappointed.

The extended projections of the report go up to 2016, when the release says, the tablet market will increase to close to 370 million shipped units. The proportions of sales remain similar though both Microsoft and Android will gain on iOS devices in a small manner at least.

This report does not see the release of Windows 8 on tablet devices really shaking up the tablet market. That OS will be released later this year and Windows is hoping it will recuperate their lackluster performance thus far in mobile computing.

Tech projections that far into the future are very difficult to get behing fully, developments in the physical and soft technologies can change at such a rapid pace that the figures are less meaningful in themselves but operate more as a proxy for expectations.

The projections close a good day for Apple although the stock dropped to 628.44 today a fall of 1.22%. Today was the first time that the companybroke a market capitalization of $600 billion. The firm’s meteoric rise continues and analysts don’t seem to be reducing their expectations.