Most Small Businesses Choose iPad for Tablet Purchases in 2012

By Ariel Jones — January 09, 2012

Almost three-quarters of small- and medium-sized businesses are likely to purchase tablets for their workforce in 2012, according to a recent survey by the NPD Group. The survey, which was completed by technology decision-makers at businesses with fewer than 1,000 employees, also shows that overall spending on tablets will likely increase or remain the same.

Of all the small- and medium-sized businesses who completed the email-based survey, 73% said they would purchase tablets this year - up 5% from the previous quarter's survey. The average investment on tablets is projected to top $21,000 in the next 12 months.

However, the purchasing and intent numbers changed drastically depending on business size, the research firm reported.

 
Purchase 
Intent
Average Spend
Increase or Maintain Spending
Tablets
73%
$21,482
90%
Under 50 Employees
54%
$1,912
88%
50 - 200 Employees
70%
$10,122
83%
201 - 500 Employees
81%
$27,031
91%
501 - 999 Employees
89%
$38,749
90%

For businesses with 501 to 999 employees, average spending on tablets was said to be $38,479; on the flip side, the smallest businesses (under 50 employees) were only planning on spending $1,912.

Intent to purchase also dropped dramatically among the smaller companies, with only 54% planning to purchase tablets in the coming year. Still, the vast majority of surveyed companies reported that they would be increasing or maintaining their budget for tablets.

"NPD's research shows that iPad purchase preference is higher among larger firms than smaller ones, which is an important indicator that Apple is gaining traction far outside its typical consumer space," commented Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at the NPD Group.

"Businesses of all sizes appear to be determined to capitalize on the tablet phenomenon," he continued. "The iPad, just as it is in the consumer market, is synonymous for 'tablet' in the business market, leaving Apple poised to take advantage of the increased spending intentions of these SMBs."

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