The results come from The NPD Group’s third quarter SMB Technology Monitor, which revealed that 73% of SMBs plan to purchase tablets over the next year, up from 68% in the second quarter findings. Approximately 90% of these small and medium-sized firms anticipate spending the same amount or more on tablets in the next year.
The NPD says that the average investment an SMB will make on tablets will exceed $21,000 over the next year, but did stress that this figure could change if the company size, intent to buy and amount spent changes dramatically.
Among the larger firms, 89% plan to purchase new tablets, up from 81% in Q2. Approximately 95% of these firms are planning to increase or maintain their spending in this area and NPD found that larger firms plan to spend almost $39,000 on tablet hardware over the course of the next 12 months.
As to be expected, the smallest firms (of 50 or fewer employees) are less focused on tablets, with 54% of companies planning to buy tablets. 89% of these firms plan to increase or maintain spending, with the average tablet spend for these smaller companies said to be less than $2,000.
"Businesses of all sizes appear to be determined to capitalize on the tablet phenomenon," said Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD.
"The iPad, just as it is in the consumer market, is synonymous for 'Tablet' in the business market, leaving Apple poised to take advantage of the increased spending intentions of these SMBs. NPD's research shows that iPad purchase preference is higher among larger firms than smaller ones, which is an important indicator that Apple is gaining traction far outside its typical consumer space."