Tablet sales, led more then likely by the Apple iPad, are poised to overtake desktop sales by 2015 – or sooner, said Christopher Riley, MD of The Notebook Company, one of the country’s leading notebook and accessories retailers.
Riley said there will “always be a place for desktops”, but their overall importance – and sales figures – are on a continual decline.
“iPad sales are really starting to take off and this was very evident in festive season sales in the USA, where the latest Apple invention really captured the minds of users. Even the extended leave of absence – due to health reasons – announced by Apple’s co-founder, Steve Jobs, could not dampen the spirit of the iPad market, it seems.
“We are arguably looking at what might well become a tablet ‘tsunami’,” said Riley, “and this is going to have a major impact on the technology market.”
Riley said that he is gearing his company up for a “big uptake” of iPads during 2011.
“This is perhaps the shot in the arm the IT industry needs to give it additional impetus – we are certainly predicting some good iPad sales at The Notebook Company this year. It could have a marked impact on our bottomline, although I don’t think we will see iPad’s offering stiff opposition to our notebook range just yet,” he added.
According to Forrester, tablets are going to surpass desktop sales by 2015, and maybe as early as 2013, if the trend keeps up. It was predicted that tablets will sell upwards of 20,4 million units by 2015.
“This is a significant number and, while the local market is always a relatively small market, this phenomenon could have a profound on companies in South Africa who are moving into this market.”
The PC, it seems, is on a definite downward trend. There were 18.7 million units sold in 2010 –but this is expected to shrink to 15.7 million in 2015.
“The PC is not dead yet, but it is arguably becoming a tad moribund with regards to sales figures,” said Riley. “The bottomline is that tablets will replace laptops as the chosen portable devices, laptops will replace desktops as movable devices – while desktops will be used to replace the ladder, or conventional doorstops!”