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July 19, 2012

Tablets Mostly are Used for Web Surfing, Web-Based Communications

By Gary Kim, Contributing Editor

Research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners has released the results of a study it conducted of more than 1,000 iPad buyers between December 2011 and April 2012. CIRP asked those recent buyers what they're most likely to do with their slate and found that 40 percent of respondents indicated they surf the Web on the iPad, leading all possible activities.

A separate study sponsored by Business Insider found similar results. That reader survey got 2,242 responses. Results aren’t really all that different from the first and second surveys.

The use case for the first iPad remains the same as the new iPad.

Some 21 percent of owners of the new iPad polled by CIRP say they use it in a work situation, which is more than the 13 percent of all iPad owners who say the same. Maybe that means something, and maybe it doesn’t. Work uses of tablets obviously include Web surfing, use of e-mail and communications with associates using social networks.

Work-related videos also are more often used these days.

It stands to reason, in particular, that if an employee wants an employer to issue an iPad, it behooves that employee to say “I need to use it for work.”

Social network use is also more common with the new iPad owners, with 16 percent reporting they use the new tablet for that activity, compared to 11 percent of all iPad owners, according to CIRP data.

According to the Business Intelligence survey, 37 percent of users use tablets for Web browsing. Some 21 percent use tablets for e-mail, social networks and other communication apps. Twelve percent watch videos. About 11 percent play games and 18 percent use other apps.

The findings from both surveys suggest the latent content consumption device demand that was essentially hidden by use of PCs and notebooks. For many people, smartphones and tablets can displace PCs or notebooks because, as it turns out, many people primarily use a "computer" or computing device to browse the web and use Web communications tools, even for work.

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Edited by Braden Becker
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