We are rapidly approaching a post-PC world, and the biggest catalyst for this shift is not the smartphone, but the rise of the tablet.
PC shipments slipped 13.2% year-over-year to about 76 million units in the second quarter of 2013, according to new data from Gartner and IDC.
Meanwhile, tablet shipments spiked 83% compared to last year, as about 45 million tablets were shipped last quarter.
Combining the two device shipment totals, tablets accounted for 37% of shipments this quarter. That’s up from a 22% share a year ago.
It’s clear consumers have been less enticed by the thought of upgrading an existing PC, where hardware and software innovation have been stale for the past few years.
Tablet innovation has been rapid, and new devices with novel features continue to pop up frequently.
For mobile-centric users, tablets are much less expensive, easier to wield than a standard notebook, and sport a unique user experience thanks to touch-screen displays. They also boast unique mobile apps in ecosystems like Google Play and Apple’s App Store.
For casual home computing users, tablets are more than capable of fulfilling everyday needs like Web browsing, social networking, or e-mailing — all in a more ergonomic or comfortable form than a traditional desktop PC.
These shipments numbers are further evidence of the march toward a tablet-first computing culture. IDC predicts they will fully overtake traditional PCs by 2015.
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