Transporters Warming to Tablets for Business, Interest Doubles in Single Year

Microsoft's Surface tablet. Photo: Reuters

Microsoft’s Surface tablet. Photo: Reuters

It seems every technology goes through this cycle – a new product hits the market, gains market share, and then replicas and wannabes flood the market, only to cause consumer buying confusion due to an overabundance of choice.  The PC market had it. Cell phones did it. And now tablets are doing it.

The New York Times just posted a long story on this phenomenon, especially as it relates to consumer buying for the holidays.

Led by Apple’s iPad a few years ago, the market now includes products the Samsung Galaxy, Amazon Kindle Fire, Microsoft’s Surface, Google’s Nexus series and many more, all cut from the same cloth and all claiming to do more than the next.

As people have gotten more comfortable with the notion of keyboardless computing, so too have transporters considering buying a tablet for business use.

In a recent survey of carriers on uShip found that:

  • Nearly 1 in 2 (47%) are now more likely to buy a tablet for business, up from just 1 in 4 (23%) in 2011, a jump of 24% in just one year
  • The percentage of transporters unlikely to buy a tablet for business dropped a whopping 20%.  In 2011, 48% said they were unlikely to purchase a tablet for business, while in 2012, just 29% said they were not interested
  • The survey also found the drivers “unsure” about a tablet purchase has decreased by 9%


These are pretty sizable shift in a single year.  Why?  A few potential reasons: One, the products have been more widely marketed while two, prices have dropped dramatically as newer generations have come out and older generations go on sale. Plus, it’s the sexiest consumer technology out there right now.

About uShip’s Mobile Usage Survey: 
Started in 2010, uShip’s mobile study is unique in that it tracks
year-over-year mobile trends – not just a single point in time – of a
cross-section of active transporters on uShip, ranging from commercial carriers
to small-fleet owner-operators to hot-shot drivers.  Over
26,000 drivers
were surveyed between Oct. 17-30, 2012.

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