Global shipments of both tablets and mobile phones are forecast to increase by the end of 2013, while traditional PC shipments are likely to decline, says a new Gartner report.

The worldwide tablet shipments are expected to grow 67.9 percent with shipments reaching 202 million units, while the mobile phone market is forecast to grow 4.3 percent with a volume of more than 1.8 billion units. At the same time, global PC shipments for 2013 are forecast at 305 million units, a 10.6 percent decline from 2012.

Tablet, Mobile Phone Shipments Will Increase In 2013
Global shipments of tablets and mobile phones are projected to increase by the end of 2013, while PC shipments are on the decline, says Gartner. Reuters

“The sharp decline in PC sales recorded in the first quarter was the result of a change in preferences in consumers’ wants and needs, but also an adjustment in the channel to make room for new products hitting the market in the second half of 2013,” Gartner said in a statement.

However, the report said the worldwide combined shipments of PCs, tablets and mobile phones are expected to touch 2.35 billion units in 2013, a 5.9 percent increase from 2012, as anytime-anywhere computing drives buyer behavior.

“Consumers want anytime-anywhere computing that allows them to consume and create content with ease, but also share and access that content from a different portfolio of products,” Carolina Milanesi, research vice president at Gartner said.

Global Tablet And Mobile Phone Shipments Gartner
Worldwide Devices Shipments by Segment Gartner

Source: Gartner (June 2013)

According to Gartner, there has been a shift in consumer preferences as many moved away from premium tablets to basic tablets. The share of basic tablets is expected to increase faster than anticipated, as sales of the iPad mini already represented 60 percent of overall iOS sales in the first quarter of 2013.

“The increased availability of lower priced basic tablets, plus the value add shifting to software rather than hardware will result in the lifetimes of premium tablets extending as they remain active in the household for longer,” Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner said.

As for the operating systems in the device market, Google’s Android is expected to power more than 866 million devices in 2013, which may increase to 1.06 billion devices.

Global Tablet And Mobile Phone Shipments Gartner
Worldwide Devices Shipments by Operating System Gartner

Source: Gartner (June 2013)

“Although the numbers seem to paint a clear picture of who the winner will be when it comes to operating systems (OS) in the device market (see Table 2), the reality is that today ecosystem owners are challenged in having the same relevance in all segments,” Milanesi said.

“Apple is currently the more homogeneous presence across all device segments, while 90 percent of Android sales are currently in the mobile phone market and 85 percent of Microsoft sales are in the PC market,” she added.