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Survey shows most people treating new tablets as 'toys'

updated 05:25 pm EDT, Wed September 21, 2011

iPad owners more likely to pay for downloads

Most people who are buying tablets are doing so because they see it as a new "toy," not practical, a Citigroup survey suggests. In July the firm polled 1,800 people in the US, UK and China, and found that 62 percent of those planning to buy a tablet in the next 12 months want a "new toy/gadget." Other reasons for getting a tablet -- such as gifts, work or replacing an existing computer -- are comparatively minor. The group wanting a tablet as a toy has in fact grown substantially since November, when it was nevertheless still major at 44 percent.

Web browsing, messaging, social networking, "digital media" and ebooks remain the primary uses for tablets. 67 percent of people report doing web browsing, while 55 percent are engaging in email and/or instant messaging. Narrowing down to the iPad, though, Citigroup observes that iPad owners tend to download more apps than users of competing tablets, and are more likely to pay for them. In fact whereas 81 percent of iPad owners have paid for an app, just 43 percent of the rest of the survey group has.

A subsection of the survey reveals that iPad owners with Netflix accounts are indeed using the hardware to watch movies and TV shows, despite claims by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings that iPad support is not a big deal for subscribers. A full 30 percent of iPad owners are claimed to be watching Netflix content on the device, versus 26 percent who have Netflix but are skipping tablet viewing. 44 percent of iPad owners don't have a Netflix account.

by MacNN Staff



  1. c4rlob

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Nothing new

    Most consumers have always preferred Apple products for their "play" appeal, more than "work". And it's the sophistication of the products that then allows them to piggyback into practical/business uses. Which is the opposite of other products which tend to err on the side of being too businessy but too dull to also satisfy the play-instinct of most people.

    Apple aims to "delight". And it turns out that if you do that first and well, then the rest happens quite naturally.

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I'd be more interested

    in a report that was complete, like how many of those who purchased as "a toy" now routinely turn to those devices for practical use?

    I, for instance, often use my gaming console as a door stop or paper weight.
    I don't even own a gaming console. ;)

  1. facebook_James

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Sep 2011


    comment title

    This just proves my point when I was defending Michael Dell when he said that the "Post PC" era were are entering is BS. Its a product of advertising and execs trying to create the next big thing and make up for slowed PC sales. No one uses an Ipad for real work. They are modern day media consumption devices.

  1. Wingsy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    A "Toy" For Enterprise?

    It's really surprising that somewhere around 80-90% of the top 500 companies are using or evaluating the iPad for internal use. Why on earth would they even consider a "toy"?

    This story smells a little fishy I think.

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