Andrew Walsh discusses the tablet market in Q4 2013

GfK: How did tablets fare in the lead up to Christmas?

GfK Account Manager Andrew Walsh takes a look at how the ever-broadening tablet market continued to attract consumers in the final quarter of 2013.

Media tablets continued to post strong year-on-year growth as the market turned its attention to the final quarter of 2013 and strong pre-Christmas activity. This was evident from the 50 per cent year-on-year volume growth seen by the media tablets market versus last October and now accounts for almost two-thirds of all personal computing devices bought in October compared to 50 per cent the year before.

Media tablets’ increasing affordability and ever-broadening offering continued to pull consumers towards the market – average tablet prices had declined by 25 per cent compared to 2012, when the average price was nearer to £290, now it sits nearer £220.

Due to such increased popularity and affordability, which has been driven by a move to smaller display sizes, has ensured the traditional notebooks market has suffered and declined by 15 per cent in volume demand versus October 2012.

Higher-end “Ultrathin” notebooks (those that are 2cm thick or less) grew by ten per cent in October 2013 versus the year before, yet this category still accounted for less than ten per cent of the mobile computing category.

Desktop Computing also experienced growth. The movement towards All-In-One (AIO) had been strong, growing by 65 per cent in value versus October 2012. The AIO market is now more valuable than the Traditional Desk Computing segment, which itself is in seven per cent value growth. Akin to Media Tablets and Ultrathins, there was a high adoption of touchscreen technology within AIO as well as a thriving premium segment.

During Christmas, it was no surprise to see media tablets continue to grow market volume as they became ubiquitous in major retail stores and were promoted ahead of traditional computing devices, which become marginalised over this time.

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