But really it is tablets & smartphones that are stealing larger share of web traffic
If you ever wanted proof of the pudding that desktops are in decline thanks to tablets and smartphones, then it’s clearly indicated in their decline in dominance of traffic over the Internet. As 5IDegrees.mobi has just shown in its Chart of the Week, over the last 20 months, tablet and smartphone devices have gradually chipped away at the web share of desktop and non-mobile devices. But the exception proves the rule and last month [September 2013], desktop web traffic took a slight upturn, seemingly at the expense of smartphone and feature phone web traffic. 51Degrees speculates that this could rooted in the growth in the ‘ultramobile’ product category.
Until this slight blip in desktop traffic – the small rise in desktop web traffic showing an increase of 0.13 per cent in September 2013, desktops’ share of the Internet traffic was in the low 70 per cents.
That compares to smartphones with around 18 per cent. But while the desktop stole traffic from smartphones, tablet web traffic share increased by an average rate of 0.26 per cent.
If this trend continues over the next 6 months, 51Degress.mobi says, tablets could get close to a 10 per cent share of total web traffic.
This is hardly surprising as the latest figures produced by analyst firm, Gartner, predict worldwide tablet shipments will grow 53.4 per cent in 2013, with shipments reaching 184 million units.
Meanwhile, Gartner says that PC shipments are continuing to decline – predicted to be down 11.2 per cent on 2012 shipments.
That’s lower even than Gartner’s prior forecast back in April 2013 when it said it expected PCs to decline 7.3 per cent in 2013.
Tablets seemed to be the only device type unaffected by the desktop rise over the past 20 months.
With an end-of-year increase in tablet sales predicted, will we see a web share spike in the early months of 2014, 51Degrees asks?
Anyway, what are these mysterious ‘ultramobiles’ which are helping desktop to increase its web traffic share slightly?
The answer appears to be lightweight laptops and portables capable of running a full desktop OS – such as Microsoft’s Surface Pro tablet, for example.
Thus, in effect, tablets are taking a share of web traffic at both ends of the scale.