Date Published: 8th September 2015

Are tablets on the decline?

The amount of time that adults spend online has doubled in the past decade; the average adult now spends more than 20 hours a week browsing, shopping, using social media and banking online. That calculates to over 2 hours a day, with 33% of Brits using their smartphones as their main internet device, according to Ofcom.

The amount of adults who own a smartphone has almost doubled; only 39% in 2012, with two thirds (66%) now owning a smartphone. However, young people still lead the way with 90% of 16-24 year olds owning a smartphone.

Is there space in the market for smartphones and tablets?

With smartphones having better battery life, camera and a lot more apps being more compatible with smartphones than tablets they are becoming more and more popular and the tablet is lagging behind. With site mobile optimisation still in its youth, often sites have been made to fit mobile and full laptop/monitor screens – therefore, when viewing a site on a tablet it is highly likely that the site isn’t completely optimised to fit the screen as it is between a mobile and full desktop size.

‘As brands once again launch flagship smartphones with even larger screens than before, the distinction between devices could become more blurred than it is for most owners today. The increasing size of smartphone screens could put people off buying 7” tablets, as those with 5-7” smartphones may see less benefit in owning two similarly sized devices.’ Mintel

However, 1 in 2 brits have a tablet in their home, and this figure has increased from 5.6 million tablets being purchased in 2012 in Britain, to 9.5 million being sold in 2013, according to Mintel.

The original idea behind the tablet was ensuring that the hand held device was portable and easier to use on the go than laptops. Although only 15% of Brits claim that they frequently take their tablet with them when travelling; so this USP has not succeeded.

The small portable hand-held lap devices are a popular option for parents; 71% of children aged 5-15 now have access to a tablet. Most popularly used for watching films and playing interactive games – just generally keeping children entertained.

So should we be digging a grave for these handheld devices or have they got a few more miles yet?

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