Apple and Samsung tablet users just want to have fun
Half of all tablet device screen time is spent on entertainment activities, such as playing games, reading books, watching live TV or listening to music and radio, according to a recent end-user survey by research group Gartner.
The other half is divided between communication (26 percent), such as sending emails and visiting social media sites; production activities (15 percent), such as editing videos and writing blogs; and finding information (9 percent), including checking the news and weather and researching products and services.
"Of the different types of activity, people spend by far the most time on entertainment, and people often use several devices at once, so it seems we are turning into a society of multitasking, multiscreen users," says Meike Escherich, principal research analyst at Gartner. "Tablet users, for example, continue to use tablets most in the evening, between 7pm and 10pm. This suggests the use of tablets as companions to television viewing and other living-room activities. Smartphones are used more for ad hoc research or quick sessions on social media websites while on the move or engaged in another screen activity".
The survey of 726 tablet owners in the US, UK and Australia was conducted in July of this year. It found that on average respondents spent four hours a day of their personal time in front of tablets, PCs or smartphones. The survey didn't take into account time spent with TV sets, games consoles, eBook readers or MP3 players.
The survey also finds that owners of Apple and Samsung tablets spend more of their time -- around 30 minutes extra each day -- on entertainment than owners of other brands. Apple tablet owners use their iPads most often and over 80 percent of them are heavy users, using the device 10 or more times a day.
"Other tablet providers need to understand why owners of their tablets spent significantly less time on their devices," says Annette Jump, research director at Gartner. "Unless consumers use tablets regularly and find them valuable for specific activities, they are unlikely to purchase the same brand or, indeed, any replacement tablet after a couple of years".
When it comes to buying a new tablet the brand now only ranks number three in purchasing criteria with buyers focusing more on design and price. This is attributed to the market moving beyond early adopters to people who want reliable and durable products.
Ms. Escherich adds, "Tablet purchases in mature markets increased by 76 percent in 2012, and their rapid adoption shows no sign of abating. Tablet vendors can no longer focus exclusively on early adopters. From the very beginning of the product design and development process, they must review their portfolios to ensure they have products also capable of attracting later adopters. Late first-time buyers of media tablets have different expectations and buying criteria from early adopters, and this has a significant impact on how media tablets must be marketed".
More detailed analysis is available in the full report on the Gartner website.