We have a hard time believing tablet PCs will knock the desktop and notebook markets out cold, but that doesn't mean these portable slabs of hardware aren't ultra-popular. They're so popular, in fact, that at least one analyst believes tablet PCs sales will skip way ahead of traditional PC sales in just three years. There is, however, a major caveat
Here's the deal. A new report by BI Intelligence predicts tablet sales will reach nearly 500 million units by 2015, compared to 'just' 360 million traditional PC sales. However, those tablet PC figures also include dedicated eBook readers, which is a popular market in and of itself, and one that doesn't compete with PCs in any form.
That right there might be enough to render the report worthless in the eyes of some, though it appears that even without eBook readers included in the mix, BI still thinks tablet sales will surpass PC sales, but by a much slimmer margin (around 40 million units).
Lower prices will help drive tablet sales, and according to BI, the Kindle Fire was proof positive that there's a lot of "pent-up demand" for a solid, sub-$500 tablet.