Pew Internet data have shown slow but steady increase in tablet computer ownership in the U.S. since the project began measuring the device’s use in May of 2010. To capture the full range of mobile app use among American adults, the current survey included questions measuring app use and downloading among tablet owners.
Results indicate that 10% of U.S. adults report having a tablet computer such as an iPad, Samsung Galaxy or Motorola Xoom. [Note: The survey was conducted before the Kindle Fire was on the market.] In May 2010, just 3% of adults reported having a tablet.
Among the 10% of adults who currently own a tablet, three quarters (75%) report downloading apps to the device, which equates to 8% of all adults. The vast majority of tablet app downloaders (82%) have also downloaded apps to their cell phone, thus there is considerable overlap across the two groups.
Overall, when cell and tablet app downloaders are combined, 34% of adults report downloading apps to one or both of these devices.
One might expect that adults who download apps to tablets are similar demographically to those who download apps to their phones, since a majority of tablet downloaders are also cell phone app downloaders. However, the tablet app downloading population skews slightly more female than the overall cell app downloading population, and is also slightly older, from higher income households, and more highly educated.