More children have own device

Half UK households now use tablet computers

Tablet computersThe tablet computer has established itself as a must-have device in just five years with more than half of British homes now owning one.

Apple’s iPad launched in the UK on 28 May 2010 and, together with other tablet devices, is helping to shape the way we surf the internet, communicate and watch TV and video.

The rapid rise in popularity of tablets means that more than half of UK households (54%) now have one, against just 2% in 2011.

Tablets are proving particularly popular among people aged 35-54 with nearly two thirds of this age group (64%) having a tablet.

The trend looks set to continue – 21% of households currently without a tablet told Ofcom they were likely to get one within the next 12 months.

A tablet generation

According to Ofcom research, seven in ten (71%) children aged 5-15 had access to a tablet at home by the end of 2014, up from just over half (51%) in 2013.

And many children do not even have to share a tablet with their parents. One in three  (34%) aged 5-15 has their own device – up from one in five (19%) in 2013.

Tablets are also proving popular with toddlers – one in ten (11%) of 3-4 year olds now has their own tablet to keep them entertained.

Gaming on tablets

In terms of reach, the mobile phone was the primary device used for gaming by the end of 2014, with over a quarter (26%) of mobile users playing games at least once a week.

But gaming on tablets is becoming increasingly popular, and catching up on console gaming. Some 15% of all adults use a tablet to play games such as Angry Birds, Halo or Candy Crush compared with 17% for gaming on consoles. Almost one in four (24%) 16-24 year olds are regularly gaming on their tablet.

App usage

Tablets are helping to drive the use of apps, with 86% of adults who go online on a tablet using apps at the end of 2014.

News apps are proving popular with 48% of all app users typically getting their headlines on an app, compared to 37% who tend to use a web browser.

But, when searching for information, the browser still prevails. Some 61% of app users mostly use a browser to find the information they are looking for. Only 25% tend to use an app.

Using a tablet when out and about

While more than one in three adults (37%) use a tablet to go online at home, 15% appear to take their tablet with them when out and about – away from home, work or their place of study.

Watching video clips is proving popular on tablets. At the end of 2014, 58% of people with a tablet connected at home were watching video clips online. 36% were watching catch-up TV services such as BBC iPlayer or ITV Player.

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