Tablets to reach 70% of Australians by 2017

More than 5 million Australians now have tablets and contrary to the predictions of Steve Jobs, smaller models are set to dominate, new research shows.

Analyst firm Telsyte reported that 2.4 million tablets were sold in Australia in 2012, and this annual figure would increase to 7 million by 2017.

In that time tablet penetration is expected to climb from 22 per cent to 70 per cent in Australia.

Long before the release of the 7.9-inch iPad mini, late Apple founder Steve Jobs said 7-inch tablets were “tweeners” that were too small and would be “dead on arrival” compared to the full-sized iPad.

But Telsyte says 7- to 9-inch tablet sales will exceed 10-inch devices by next year.

In 2012, more than 70 per cent of tablets sold in Australia were made by Apple followed by Samsung and Asus, Telsyte reports.

Earlier this week Nielsen released its Connected Consumers Report 2013, which found 31 per cent of households have a tablet – a figure that is expected to rise to 50 per cent next year. Nielsen says tablets will become key devices for watching internet TV and “dual screening”.

Analyst firm IDC expects global shipments of iPads to fall behind Android tablets for the first time this year, largely due to the popularity of smaller devices.

Globally, IDC expects iPad shipments to account for 46 per cent of the market this year

(down from 51 per cent last year), while Android’s share will be 49 per cent (up from 42 per cent).IDC also raised its 2013 tablet shipment forecast to 190.9 million units, up from its previous forecast of 172.4 million units. Last year, global tablet shipments grew to 128.3 million units, up from 72 million in 2011, according to IDC.

Google’s Nexus 7 tablet and Amazon’s Kindle, which uses its own customisation of the Android operating system, made major inroads with consumers last year. In November, Apple launched its own foray into smaller-sized tablets with the IPad Mini.

Asher Moses
Technology Editor
The Sydney Morning Herald

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