Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.
A new report from research firm IDC predicts that tablet shipments will exceed regular PC shipments as consumers gravitate toward cheaper devices.
The report says tablet shipments will grow 58.7% in 2013, and will exceed portable PC shipments (laptops and netbooks) by the end of the year. IDC predicts the tablet market will overtake the rest of the PC market by 2015.
Meanwhile, the PC market continues to implode, as IDC noted a few months ago when it said shipments were down 14% year over year.
So what's going on here?
Instead of buying regular laptops and desktops, consumers are buying tablets, which can do many of the same tasks for far less money. Right now, the iPad is till on top, but IDC expects Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system to gain more traction once manufacturers start making smaller and cheaper touchscreen devices. Most Windows 8 tablets today have around 10-inch screens, but ~8-inch Windows 8 devices are expected to arrive later this year.
IDC also expects tablets to get even cheaper on average, making them far more attractive than regular PCs.
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