As predicted, tablets were some of the hottest items this holiday shopping season. Over 78 million tablets shipped during the fourth quarter 2013 and Apple is set to lead another year of huge tablet market growth in 2014.
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) today estimated that a full 44% of online Americans now own at least one tablet. According to a new report from the organization, 70% of these same Americans are planning to purchase a tablet at some point.
“Tablets had a strong 2013 holiday season, particularly on Black Friday, but are showing the beginning signs of market saturation,” said Kevin Tillmann, a senior research analyst at CEA. “Striking the right chord with consumers’ tablet expectations following the holiday season will be imperative to improving sales, despite slowing penetration during the past year. Consumers are looking for competitive pricing and simplicity, now that several manufacturers are in the mix.”
Though CEA’s report saw tablet revenue growth slowing last year, falling average sale prices should be able to keep the category growing for quite some time. The report predicts U.S. tablet sales to reach $27.3 billion in 2014 with 89.3 million tablets sold.
CEA’s report also looked at what exactly Americans are using their tablets for. The firm found that a full two-thirds of tablet owners use their tablets for gaming. Other popular apps include weather apps and using social networking apps, which over half (51%) of tablet owners use. CEA estimates that tablet owners are now spending upwards of $256 million on apps each month.
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