new report from market research group NPD shows that Apple firmly remains king of the tablet hill, despite a wealth of new competition in 2011. Non-Apple tablets sales combined for 1.2 million units, a total of $415 million in revenue from January through October 2011. According to PCWorld, Apple has sold 25 million iPads during the same timeframe.

Among competitive brands, HP led the pack with 17 percent share of the total tablet market, driven at least in part by the company’s TouchPad fire sale earlier this year. Sales of the HP Touchpad picked up after the company discontinued the product and slashed the price of the 16GB until from $499 to $99. Samsung sat comfortably behind HP with 16 percent of the tablet market. ASUS (10 percent), Motorola (9 percent) and Acer (9 percent) rounded out the remaining top five non-Apple tablet makers.

Despite consumer interest in other tablet brands, analysts still expect iPad to account for a healthy 65 percent share of the tablet market in 2011, according to PCWorld.

NPD analyst Stephen Baker thinks the numbers paint a promising picture for competing tablet manufacturers. “If you look at the tablet market without Apple there are a number of high-profile brands vying for that number two spot,” Baker said. “According to NPD’s Consumer Tracking Service, 76 percent of consumers who purchased a non-Apple tablet didn’t even consider the iPad, an indication that a large group of consumers are looking for alternatives, and an opportunity for the rest of the market to grow their business.”

The NPD report shows signs that competitors may be gaining traction against Apple, with non-Apple tablet sales increasing as the year progressed. Second-quarter sales were three times better than the first quarter; third-quarter sales were two times that of second quarter sales.

Amazon’s Kindle Fire brings an interesting new option to the table. Yet while the product is selling well, Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes told All Things D that the Kindle Fire is unlikely to steal sales from iPad. “We believe the iPad still stands out as the industry standard in terms of software integration. Some of the early reviews for the Fire are less than flattering. We believe that iPad is set for a new product cycle in FY12, which will reaccelerate the category,” said Reitzes.

Despite consumer interest in other tablet brands, analysts still expect iPad to account for a healthy 65 percent share of the tablet market in 2011, according to PCWorld.

Where do you stand on the tablet wars? Would you consider buying a non-Apple tablet? If so, which one and why?

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