Tablet ownership in the UK has increased by 20% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2014, according to industry regulator Ofcom.
According to the regulator’s 2014 report, 44% of UK homes now own a tablet, and smartphone ownership is almost equal to laptop ownership, with 61% of UK households owning smartphones, and 63% owning laptops.
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Earlier this year a study by AVG Technologies found that 66% of children aged between three and five are able to play a computer games and 47% can navigate a smartphone, yet only 14% can tie their shoes and just 23% can swim unaided.
But Ofcom has found that the older generation are using tablet devices as a higher rate than expected, with more than 50% of adults aged 25-54 in the ABC1 socio-economic group owning a tablet, with 28% of over 55s owning a tablet device.
Uptake of sales in desktop PCs has been in steady decline over the last few years, but sales levelled during the XP-driven hardware refresh.
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Ofcom found that PC ownership fell from 44% in 2012 to 35% this year, with only 32% of 16-24 now owning a desktop PC.
As the sales of fixed devices decline, smartphones dominate the market – more than 60% of UK adults now own a one – and the average UK household owns at least four internet-enable devices.
With the ongoing trend of users multi-screening or device-switching throughout the day, Ofcom has found that, where adults own all four types of device – PCs, laptops, smartphones and tablets – the tablet is the device they consider to be the most important for accessing the internet.