The inexorable rise of the tablet

To put that into perspective, Apple launched the original iPad in the UK on 28th May 2010 - just five years ago.

Tablets are particularly popular among the 35-54 age group, with 64% of people in that age bracket owning one. And they are also widely used by children, with 71% of 5-15 year-olds having access to a tablet at home by the end of 2014, up from just over half (51%) in 2013.

Even one in ten toddlers (3-4 years old) have access to a tablet to keep them entertained.

Kate Reeve, director of consumer research at Ofcom, says: "In just five years, tablets have become a must-have device for millions of UK households. We're using them to catch up with the news, watch our favourite soaps and keep the kids entertained."

Watching video clips is one of the most popular uses for tablets. By the end of 2014, 58% of users with a tablet at home were watching video clips online, with 36% watching catch-up TV services such as BBC iPlayer and ITV Player.

Although 15% of adults use tablets to play games such as Angry Birds, Halo or Candy Crush, mobile phones remain the most popular device for portable gaming.

And not surprisingly, apps are key part of the tablet experience, with 86% of adults using them when online on their tablet. News apps are among the most popular, with 48% of users getting their news via an app rather than a desktop website.

However, it seems most of us prefer to use our tablets at home or work, with only 15% of us using our tablets when we are out and about.

[Source: Ofcom]

Andy Clough

Andy is Global Brand Director of What Hi-Fi? and has been a technology journalist for 30 years. During that time he has covered everything from VHS and Betamax, MiniDisc and DCC to CDi, Laserdisc and 3D TV, and any number of other formats that have come and gone. He loves nothing better than a good old format war. Andy edited several hi-fi and home cinema magazines before relaunching in 2008 and helping turn it into the global success it is today. When not listening to music or watching TV, he spends far too much of his time reading about cars he can't afford to buy.