Pew: 50 Percent In US Now Own Tablet Or E-Reader

ipad-mini-featuredThis morning, the Pew Research Center released new data about tablet and e-reader ownership among US adults. Previously, the organization said that 43 percent of Americans (over 16) owned either a tablet or e-reader (or both). After the holiday, that number has jumped to 50 percent of all American adults (18 and over).

The Pew survey, which also explores e-reading habits, specifically reports that “42 percent of adults now own tablet computers, up from 34 percent in September.” It was conducted in early January “among a nationally representative sample of 1,005 adults.”

Pew tablet numbers

Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project

What do these figures mean in terms of actual device numbers?  There are roughly 242 million US adults according to the most recent census data. If the Pew survey data truly are representative of the larger US population it would mean:

  • Tablets: 101.6 million
  • E-readers: 77.4 million
  • Combined device ownership: 179 million devices owned by 121 million adults

The Pew survey also found that 92 percent of US adults owned a mobile phone (all in) and 75 percent had a PC. Those numbers are flat vs. last year. Tablets will out-ship and out-sell PCs this year according to a number of IT/hardware tracking firms.

The marketing implications of massive tablet ownership are obvious and far reaching. Tablets are poised to become the shopping device of choice for large numbers of consumers. Mobile devices are often preferred by users to PCs (primary vs. secondary) and tablets drive more “m-commerce” conversions than smartphones.

According to Chitika’s post-holiday analysis, the iPad has a 76 percent share of tablet-based internet traffic in North America. Kindle is the next most popular tablet after the iPad. Tablet market share

Related Topics: Apple | Apple: iPad | Channel: Mobile Marketing


About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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