Sales of 2-in1, 4G and 3G connected tablets are expected to rise in 2015 and beyond, according to analyst IDC.
IDC reports that this segment will grow at a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6 per cent, compared to Wi-Fi only devices, which will see a CAGR decline of 0.4 per cent.
Jean Philippe Bouchard, research director for tablets at IDC, said: “We're seeing cellular-capable (4G and 3G) tablets and 2-in-1 devices experience important growth in certain parts of the world and we think this represents a huge opportunity for the entire tablet ecosystem.”
However, overall tablet shipments are forecast to reach 221.8 million units in 2015, a decline of 3.8 per cent from 2014.
The analyst predicts that overall tablet sales will decline in 2015, after two consecutive quarters of declining sales.
Screen sizes may also change, with the share of small-screen tablets expected to dip from 64 per cent of the market in 2014 to 58 per cent in 2015.
Ryan Reith, program director for worldwide mobile device trackers at IDC, added: "This illustrates the direct impact phablets are having on the market, as users with larger screen smartphones have tended to have less need for a tablet with a screen size comparable to their smartphone.
“This also has some impact on overall average selling prices (ASPs) as larger screen devices tend to cost more."
This news comes after IDC reported that worldwide tablet shipments recorded a year-on-year decline, while laptops started to see a resurgence in sales.