Tablet Shipments Could Reach 145 Million This Year

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It's already clear from multiple reports this month that tablets took a big bite out of PC sales during the 2012 holiday season. Now, a new report is showing that the tablet market is set to grow even stronger in 2013.

Analyst firm ABI Research this week revealed its prediction that, worldwide, 145 million tablet devices will ship in 2013. It makes its prediction based on the number of new entrants in to the mobile market, the rising number of less expensive mobile devices, and increased mobile device adoption by businesses.

“The rate of innovation is slowing as tablet vendors augment their product portfolios to meet the needs of market audiences,” said Jeff Orr, senior practice director at ABI. “The late 2012 launches of Apple’s iPad mini and a variety of slates based on Intel architecture and new Windows operating systems will only begin to show their progress this year.”

ABI predicts that North America will receive over half of worldwide mobile device shipments. In addition, businesses are predicted to receive 19% of tablet shipments. Though ABI admits this could eat into PC sales, it also asserts that "the majority of new tablet opportunity comes from workers that have, until now, worked without the benefits of computing technologies." The research firm also does not blame slowing eReader sales on the rise of tablet computing, and instead blames book publishers.

“The facts are that the U.S. market continues to dominate eReader shipments and an aging Baby Boomer population looking to replicate the print reading experience is a waning audience,” said Orr. “If other world regions do not successfully organize digital publishing markets, the dedicated eReader market will go away without regard for adoption of tablets and other mobile devices.”

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