More than half of UK homes now own a tablet computer – just five years after they first went on sale.
The rapid rise in popularity of tablets such as Apple’s iPad, which launched in the UK on May 28, 2010, is helping to shape the way people surf the internet, communicateand watch TV and video, the figures from Ofcom show.
They are particularly popular among those aged between 35 and 54, with almost two thirds of this group (64%) owning one.
And the trend looks set to continue, with 21% of households currently without a tablet telling Ofcom they are likely to get one within the next 12 months.
Almost three quarters (71%) of children aged between five and 15 had access to a tablet at home by the end of last year, up from 51% in 2013, while 34% of this group have their own device, up from 19% in 2013.
Even toddlers have embraced the technology, with 11% of three and four-year-olds having their own tablet.
At the end of last year, 58% of people with a tablet connected at home were watching video clips online while 36% were watching catch-up TV services such as BBC iPlayer or ITV Player.
Ofcom’s director of consumer research, Kate Reeve, said: “In just five years, tablets have become a must-have device for millions of UK households.
“We’re using them to catch up with the news, watch our favourite soaps and keep the kids entertained, with around one in three five to 15-year-olds having their own tablet.”
Amazingly it seems nobody is using them to communicate via Skype, people still prefer to pick up the humble telephone to make a call. I bet my bottom dollar this is down to its reliability.
Three cheers for the landline!