New Milestone: Tablet Shipments to Surpass PCs for First Time

According to new projections from researcher IDC, tablet shipments will exceed personal computer shipments for the first time in the fourth quarter of this year. The new report underlines the shift in consumer trends from laptops and desktops to mobile devices. IDC expects that tablet shipments will reach 84.1 million units in the fourth quarter, while PC shipments will reach 83.1 million units. The total market for Internet-connected devices will jump 28 percent to $622.4 billion this year.

IDC projects that Internet-connected desktops, laptops, smartphones and tablets will reach $735.1 billion by the end of 2015.

“The growth of smartphones and tablets is making up for a projected 10 percent decline in PC sales this year,” reports Bloomberg. “The shift to mobile devices is creating new winners and losers in the technology industry. While Apple Inc., Google Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. have benefited, stalwarts of the PC business such as Hewlett-Packard Co., Microsoft Corp. and Intel Corp. have seen stagnating sales.”

“As the market for smartphones and tablets matures, lower price models are becoming more popular, according to Framingham, Massachusetts-based IDC. Smartphones and tablets costing less than $350 will account for 68 percent of all connected-device shipments, the group said. The average selling price for the gadgets will shrink to $323 by 2017 from $462 last year.”

According to the IDC report, the worldwide smart connected device space will surpass 2 billion units by the end of 2015.

IDC breaks it down: “In terms of device mix, total PC shipments accounted for 28.7 percent of the smart connected device market in 2012 while tablets accounted for 11.8 percent and smartphones for 59.5 percent. By 2017, total PCs are expected to drop to 13 percent, while tablets and smartphones will contribute 16.5 percent and 70.5 percent respectively to the overall market.”