According to a recent report by Gartner, worldwide PC, tablet and mobile phone combined shipments are expected to reach 2.4 billion units in 2013. As per the report, device shipments are forecast to continue to grow, reaching more than 2.9 billion units in 2017, but the mix of these devices will significantly change over the forecast period.
The report reveals that the proliferation of lower-priced tablets and their growing capability is accelerating the shift from PCs to tablets. Carolina Milanesi, research vice president at Gartner said,”While there will be some individuals who retain both a personal PC and a tablet, especially those who use either or both for work and play, most will be satisfied with the experience they get from a tablet as their main computing device.As consumers shift their time away from their PC to tablets and smartphones, they will no longer see their PC as a device that they need to replace on a regular basis.”
As a result, the traditional PC market of notebooks and desk-based units is expected to decline 7.6 percent in 2013.The report also reveals that beginning in 2013, ultramobiles will help offset this decline, so that sales of traditional PCs and ultramobiles combined show a 3.5 percent decline in 2013.
The report forecasts that worldwide tablet shipments will reach 197 million units in 2013, a 69.8 percent increase from 2012 shipments of 116 million units. Some key factors driving this growth will be lower prices, form factor variety, cloud update and consumers’ addiction to apps. The report found that Android continues to be the dominant OS in the device market, with a strong competition between Apple’s iOS/Mac OS and Microsoft Windows for the second spot.
As per the report, tablets are not the only device type that is seeing aggressive price erosion. Smartphones are also becoming more affordable, driving adoption in emerging markets and the prepay segment in mature markets. Of the 1.875 billion mobile phones to be sold in 2013, 1 billion units will be smartphones, compared with 675 million units in 2012.