Consumers stop using PCs, laptops in favor of tablets

Consumers with multiple electronics products in their house are ditching their other gadgets in favor of shiny new tablets.

Seventy-seven percent of tablet owners reported using their new touchsensitive device for actions which they previously completed on their laptop or desktop computer.

More than one in three tablet owners admitted to using their desktop computer less often, or not at all since purchasing a tablet, said market researcher Nielsen in a study on tablet use in the US released on May 5.

Thirty percent of consumers who owned a laptop and a tablet indicated that they were more likely to favor their tablet over their laptop. An additional 2 percent of respondents said they had stopped using their laptop all together since purchasing the tablet device.

Tablet ownership has had an impact on e-reader use too, said Nielsen. Twenty-seven percent of e-reader owners who also had a tablet used their e-reader less often or not at all.

While many users said their tablet is replacing other gadgets in their house, tablet use appears to go hand in hand with smartphone use - no respondents said they had stopped using their high-tech mobile phone since owning a tablet, and and only 13 percent said they use their smartphone less frequently than before.

Tablet owners with netbooks, on the other hand, might not even realize they have left their netbook in the cupboard.

Five percent of netbook owners with a tablet said they had stopped using the device all together since buying a tablet, by far the highest percentage seen in the study. An additional 23 percent said they used it less frequently than before.

Interestingly, the same study found that 25 percent of people with an internet-connected TV are actually switching it on more frequently since purchasing a tablet. The figures suggest that many consumers in the US are interacting with their tablet while watching TV.

The most common reason given for picking up a tablet instead of a laptop or PC was the device’s portability. Ease of interface, fast start-up time, and convenience followed in importance.

One out of two tablet owners said they kept the device all to themselves while an additional 43 percent said they shared it with other people in their family. Eight percent said they owned a tablet that was used by other family members but didn't use the device themselves.

"With new entrants like the Samsung Galaxy and the Motorola Xoom, the market for tablet computers is heating up in the United States, even though iPad continues to dominate the conversation – and market," said Nielsen.

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