“The tablet explosion has shown little sign of slowing down since hitting the market in 2010 and is set to take the mantle of the most rapid multiple market penetration in history,” said Jolyon Barker, global lead for Deloitte's Technology, Media and Telecommunications department.
“Around five million tablets will be sold to people who already own one in 2012, generating up to £1.3 billion (approximately $2 billion) in revenue for technology businesses. It is worth remembering that it took several decades after introduction for more than five percent of households to have more than one car, phone, radio or TV.”
Tablets in the enterprise
Deloitte’s report also tackled tablets in corporate settings, and the growing number of available apps. The research firm recognizes that corporate firms require greater ruggedness and security, and says that this will now become a challenge for content owners, network operators and retailers.
"We we are not suggesting a tablet designed specifically for the enteprise is needed," said Duncan Stewart, Director of Deloitte Canada Research. "These days consumer technology is the starting point, but companies don't need to adopt all consumer technology. What they need here are tablets that are more rugged with better fit and finish that can also run the company's VPN."
Stewart said for consumers the decision to buy an additional tablet could well be driven by price. "Maybe, for example, you buy a 7-inch model because you just want it for media consumption," he said. On the other hand, price is far less a factor on the corporate side.
"Based on our research when we talk to enterprises, they aren't interested in $200 tablets; they plan to buy the $600+ models that have the features they need," he said.
On the app front, Deloitte’s media and technology department has predicted that the total number of apps available from all application stores will exceed two million in 2012. If achieved, this figure would easily surpass that of last year, when the number of available apps totalled one million in December, according to the researcher.
Deloitte clearly sees the app market as incredibly fragmented at the moment, and says that developers could have to develop up to 360 different variants for a raft of different platforms this year.