In 2014, reports started rolling in that tablets were no longer a hot item with consumers. Interest in smartphones was trending upward, but interest in tablets was declining. Naturally, manufacturers were concerned.
Today, it's a very different story. Although the overall shipments of tablets have dropped by 20%, there is an upward trend among consumers worth noting.
Businesses, it seems, love tablets. Based on a recent survey of over 300 U.S. companies, growth was projected in this area. Not just minor growth, either. We're talking around 155% within the next three years. That's huge!
The study was conducted by analyst firm J. Gold Associates. It's 11 pages long and filled with interesting statistics on the shifts we're seeing in modern businesses.
For example, 12% of the companies surveyed claimed they currently rely on a practice called "BYOD," or "Bring Your Own Device." That number is anticipated to grow by 21% over the next three years. Plus, an additional 9% will be using tablets provided by their employers.
Popularity of tablets in the workplace could be growing because they serve a fundamentally different purpose than a tablet used for personal interests.
Analysts explain that the average consumer keeps a tablet much longer than they do a smartphone. In fact, smartphones are exchanged by consumers every 18 months, while tablets are exchanged every three to five years. That's a significant difference.
But it's also something that makes tablets such an ideal investment for businesses. They're easy to use, and don't require a lot training.
"Many workers don't need a super display; they need something that's functional," says Jack Gold of J. Gold Associates. "A tablet is about doing a task instead of a general purpose device."
It seems the tablet has transitioned from being just another gadget to surf the Web on. In the past, tablets were associated more as your smartphone's stepsister, but now they're more closely related to your personal computer. In fact, we've even evaluated if you need a PC at all.
The answer is, in most cases you don't. To remain competitive in today's market, tablets have beefed up their performance over the past several years. Some tablets even look and function a lot like a laptop. Like the KomandoTab2 that comes with its own Bluetooth keyboard and Windows 10.
According to the survey, Windows-based tablets are projected to show the most growth—up to 123% over a three year period. Android tablets are also expected to grow by 73%, which is a faster rate than the 63% growth projected for the iPad.
Still, the numbers are on the rise, and with good reason. How do you feel about it? Do you agree with the results of this survey, or do you think a new trend will emerge? Let us know in the comments below.