It is no news that tablets continue to be one of the hottest consumer electronics categories and are expected to show strong growth in the foreseeable future. To capture a share of this continually expanding pie, tablet vendors have increasingly invested in retail end-caps and other promotional displays. gap intelligence has been noticing tablet end-caps and new promotional displays, not only from traditional vendors, who are known to make such marketing investments, such as Samsung and Apple, but also from newer vendors such as Google, who recently began investing in promotional displays for tablets for the first time.

In addition to gaining market share, these promotional displays help a vendor and its product stand out from the crowd. We all know that outside of Apple’s iPads, most vendors are still struggling for differentiation, as the market is flooded with slates that look very similar to each other and are built on similar versions of the same OS, with or without minor tweaks. Also, if utilized effectively, these tablet displays can help manufacturers clearly communicate and highlight the usability, features, and other benefits of owning a tablet, a list which may or may not make it to the shelf tag due to space constraints.


Samsung is one of the few vendors who has been investing in tablet promotional displays and end-caps since last year and continues to follow this promotional strategy.

Best Buy offers Samsung’s Galaxy Tab and Note tablets on an end-cap in addition to carrying these devices at its dedicated “Samsung Store Within a Store,” an area reserved exclusively for Samsung devices within Best Buy retail locations. The dedicated end-cap, which has been positioned at the store for over a year now, is shiny and attractive and features Samsung’s white and blue company colors.

Samsung end-cap at Best Buy

Samsung recently also added similar end-caps at Fry’s Electronics and Costco that host its Galaxy Tab and Note tablets. While the end-caps draw attention, they offer very little information on the lines’ features or capabilities and only limit details to pricing and tablet size.

Samsung end-cap at Costco Samsung end-cap at Fry’s Electronics

A select number of Staples recently received a Samsung product showcase designed to demonstrate the vendor’s connected hardware and software ecosystem across product categories. The end-cap hosts a variety of Samsung’s products including TVs, tablets, cameras, and printers and highlights Samsung devices’ interoperability such as the Galaxy Tab and a Samsung WiFi camera wirelessly sharing pictures. The end-cap is very useful and informative and will help shoppers understand the benefits of a connected eco-system.

Samsung’s connected eco-system display at Staples


Perhaps one of the most notable displays of the year has been the Google end-cap at Best Buy. Google has never placed an end-cap or any other retail promotional display and this is the first such marketing effort from the company. The end-cap was spotted in early November and hosts Google’s new tablets along with its Chromecast devices. The Google end-cap is the most attractive tablet promotional display in retail and stands out from other end-caps with its wood finish. Google’s end-cap is currently only found at Best Buy, and has yet to be seen at any other retailer.

Google end-cap at Best Buy


Acer hosted a new dedicated end-cap for its 8-inch Windows tablet at Office Depot. Acer previously had limited success with its Android tablets, which is likely why the vendor wanted to position its 8-inch Windows tablet, the first 8-inch windows device to debut in the market, on an end-cap to attract shoppers. The end-cap is positioned in a high traffic area and highlights the device’s ability to be used both as a slate or attached to a keyboard. Despite hosting the tablet for over three months and such dedicated and strong marketing efforts, reports suggest that Acer’s Windows 8 device is experiencing poor sales.

Acer end-cap at Office Depot


Amazon’s Kindle tablets have been positioned on a dedicated end-cap at Best Buy for over a year now. However, the retailer just replaced its old Kindle end-cap at Best Buy with an updated promotional display featuring new colors. The new end-cap is positioned on the same spot as the old one and hosts both eReaders and tablets.

Amazon end-cap at Best Buy


HP’s convertibles have been positioned on a dedicated end-cap at Best Buy for close to six months. The promotional display is positioned between the store’s tablet and notebook sections and communicates the line’s “have it both ways” messaging. While the display does not stand out with its looks, it is very informative as it highlights the features of the unique device and how the convertible can be used both as a tablet and notebook.

HP end-cap at Best Buy


To help the sale of its Surface RT and Surface Pro tablets, Microsoft’s tablets have been positioned on a dedicated end-cap across retailers such as Best Buy, Staples, and Office Depot for over 6 months. In line with their “Click in and do more” messaging, Microsoft’s end-cap hosts both tablets and their accessories.

Surface Tablet end-cap

Microsoft and Intel

In addition to its own dedicated Surface tablet end-cap, Microsoft also collaborated with Intel to promote Windows 8 tablets based on Intel chips. The new Windows/Intel end-cap at Office Depot hosts the Dell Venue Pro 8 and HP Omni 10 Windows tablets. The display features attractive bright blue and white colors, and highlights the capabilities of the Windows 8 OS and emphasizes the quality of Intel-based tablets. This is a new display, but one which will also likely make its way into other retailers .

Windows/Intel Display at Office Depot


The kid-tablet maker Nabi also positioned a new stand-alone island display at Best Buy that made an appearance prior to Black Friday and hosts its Disney edition tablets for kids. This is the first promotional display from the vendor and features Mickey Mouse, which is sure to attract kids in the store.

Nabi display at Best Buy