Growth of tablet sales disrupts high-tech manufacturers
Since the first iPad was introduced more than two years ago, tablets have completely turned the computing industry upside down.
From 31.9 million sold in 2011, annual tablet sales are projected to reach 119.9 million in 2014. By comparison, Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) expects notebook sales to increase by only 10 million by 2014, while desktop and netbook sales are expected to decline.
In a survey of U.S. adults, tablets are the most desired gadget for the holidays, with 16 percent of adults saying they want one. High-definition TVs were second, at 10 percent, followed by smartphones at 8 percent.
The number of U.S. adults who have a tablet has doubled in the past year from 14 percent to 31 percent, according to CEA.
Apple said on Tuesday it has sold more than 100 million iPads since the debut in 2010.
Indeed, the impact of tablets has rippled beyond computing. The No. 1 use of tablets, according to CEA, is watching videos. And that has gutted the sales of LCD televisions less than 24 inches, often the second TV in a household, have fallen at least 20 percent, year-over-year, for each of the past three years. That's an impact hardly anyone guessed on that day when Steve Jobs stepped on stage to debut the first iPad.