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Tablets or PCs: How your business can choose the right tech

Jenna Hanson
Business and Technology Journalist

Jenna Hanson covers business news and technology for Smarter Business™

Jenna Hanson
Business and Technology Journalist

Jenna Hanson covers business news and technology for Smarter Business™

More and more Australians are owning both laptops and tablets – but which is more popular for online activity? Read on to find out.

Since launching in Australia in 2010, tablets have grown enormously popular in a short space of time. By 2012, annual tablet sales had reached 2.4 million. More than 15 million Australians had access to a tablet at the end of 2017.  

With a significantly longer history behind them, personal computers are even more popular and widely used than their smaller handheld counterparts. Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from owning both. In fact, by 2014 nearly one in two Australians had both a tablet and a personal computer. Even so, the personal computer remains the hub of household online activity.

According to 2014 Roy Morgan Research, more people used a PC for their internet activities than a tablet. Email was the number one online activity for both devices, with 68 per cent of people emailing via personal computer in an average four-week period and 34 per cent using a tablet. General internet browsing was the second most common activity, with 48 per cent of people using a personal computer and 29 per cent using a tablet.

“We are fast approaching the moment when the majority of Australians live in a household with both a tablet computer and a laptop or desktop computer − and to top it off, more than three in four of these people also have a smartphone!” says Tim Martin, former General Manager − Media, Roy Morgan Research.

"Although the personal computer remains the more commonly used device for all internet activities, any business with an online presence will need to keep a close eye on our changing device preferences."

A hand draws a PC and a tablet with a stylus
We are fast approaching the moment when the majority of Australians live in a household with both a tablet computer and a laptop or desktop computer − and to top it off, more than three in four of these people also have a smartphone!

- TIM MARTIN, ROY MORGAN RESEARCH

Rise of the business tablet 

As the tablet and the PC compete for household attention, in the corporate and commercial world each device is also highly popular and effective for different means. The best tablet for business is designed to do certain things better than a PC, and vice versa. A business tablet can be used for sharing images, videos and presentations, quickly accessing data and information, using a variety of business apps and generally doing business on the go.

 It’s also important for businesses to tailor their planning and services to how Australian consumers use their internet-enabled devices. Business owners should always consider the changing nature of PC and tablet use when building and optimising websites, apps and other online platforms.

 Keen to take advantage of business tablets in your workplace?

Talk tech with Telstra Smarter Business

Originally published 2nd September 2014. Updated 1st August 2019.

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