Consumers love the touch screen. According to a recent report from NPD DisplaySearch, we love it so much that touch screen tablets are selling more than laptops. New tablet shipments are expected to outnumber laptops sometime this year.
NPD’s report shows that tablet shipments will increase to 256.5 million globally in 2013, a 67 percent increase over 2012. Even more impressive is that they are expected to more than double that number to 579.4 million by 2017.
During the same time frame, laptops shipments are predicted to remain stagnate with last year’s numbers of approximately 203.3 million units. NDP expects laptop sale to fall by 2017 to only 183.3 million.
Ultraslim laptops, like Apple’s Macbook Air, will account for 66 percent of laptop shipment, which will gradually increase to 80 percent by 2017. However, the overall decline will continue to push PC sales downward.
NPD also notes that popular operating systems like Windows 8 are not as likely to influence tablet sales as much as low-cost devices. Even the touch screen hybrid laptop/tablets will not generate much interest from consumers.
“Windows 8 has had a limited impact on driving touch adoption in notebook PC’s due to a lack of applications needing touch and the high cost of touch on notebook PC’s,” said PF DisplaySearch analyst Richard Shim.
Tablets are fast becoming the new hotness in the tech world. The cheaper they become with better computing capabilities, the more consumers will turn to them for basic Web browsing and email checking.
Tablets won’t replace PCs as working computers, but there are not that many households that need that much computing power anyway.