You can keep your market statistics tables and sector share pie charts, the true measure of a tablet is how much an owner loves it. And ComScore reckons most users love their tablets very much indeed, but which comes out the best?
The Eye of the Beholder
When it comes to buying gadgets, the consumer is a funny creature. Product x may be clearly superior to product y, and yet you just can't get them to switch, even with better cleaning power, an extra blade, more power or the promise of better performance. In the complex world of tablets, what the end user really wants is probably a mystery to most.
Apple's plan of "build the best you can, and the they will come" seems to be working, Amazon's "its all about the content" is also proving successful. But, genuine marketing geniuses at the likes of HP and RIM were left with egg on their faces after failing to read the market.
ComScore has been asking the nation why they brought their tablet and what they think of them, resulting in a new flurry of statistics. It won't come as much of a surprise that apps, price and brand were high on the list of buying influences, but you might be surprised that Kindle Fire owners are almost as happy with their device as their iPad-owning equivalents.
So, while the press might rattle on about lack of power, expansion, openness and so on, the humble consumer is quite happy with what they've got. Based on some 6,000 users, the latest TabLens survey offers some interesting insights. We wonder what they'll think if an iPad mini turns up or Amazon's new game development studio takes off.
iPad owners showed a slight male bias with 52.9%, while the Kindle Fire audience has a greater female user base at 56.6%. Apple users tend to be younger and wealthier. On the buying side, the range of apps available and price of tablet were the joint most important factors, with brand and operating system next, and music/video capabilities the leading content consideration.
Finally, satisfaction ratings show that despite their differences, the iPad and Kindle Fire had the highest ratings with an 8.8 and an 8.7 out of 10 respectively. Android tablets (excluding the Fire) were down to 8.2, which is still highly impressive. The full report is available to from ComScore and offers the required insight for device makers, marketers and so on.