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There was a time when a desktop or notebook PC was needed for casual computing chores. These days, tablets (and smartphones) are more than sufficient for light email, surfing the web, watching streaming videos, playing casual games, and more, so it's no surprise that slates continue to sell at a rapid pace. What some might find a little shocking, however, is that tablet PC shipments will soon outpace notebooks shipments by a factor of 2:1.
According to DisplaySearch, tablet PC shipments will reach nearly 364 million units in 2014, more than doubling the projected 177 million shipments of standard notebook PC and ultra-slim PCs. By 2017, the discrepancy will be even bigger, with tablet shipments reaching 589 million and notebook PC shipments holding steady at 176 million.
"The PC market is clearly shifting away from notebooks and toward tablets," said Richard Shim, senior analyst with NPD DisplaySearch. "Supply chain indications reveal that previously planned production of notebook PCs is being pulled back due to declining adoption and that brands are gradually increasing the number of tablet PC models in their product mixes. Panel and finished goods suppliers are also increasing production of displays and other components for tablets in order to keep up with the market changes."
It helps that consumers have more choices than ever. As DisplaySearch notes, the tablet PC market is evolving, offering a greater choice in screen sizes and price points.