Cheap tablets putting people off upgrading

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Sales to fall three million this year as customers become fed-up with poor models

Sales of tablets in the UK are expected to plummet from 17 million in 2013 to 14 million this year – as customers boycott cheap, “poor performing” models.

This is the view of analyst firm CCS Insight, which claims the user experience on budget brands has had a negative impact on the market – and putting customers off from upgrading.

Falling prices
CCS director of forecasting Marina Koytcheva (pictured) expects the market to stagnate until around 2016 when sales are expected to top 20 million for the year, due largely to falling prices from established brands.

Koytcheva said: “People get what they pay for. Cheap, low-end devices have fuelled the demand for tablets. However, we predict a wave of buyer’s remorse as people realise cheap tablets just don’t perform as well as their more expensive cousins.

“We expect many of those customers to upgrade to more expensive products next time around, as they grow frustrated by the limitations of what the low-end tablets do.”

IDC European research manager Chrystelle Labesque agreed, describing the purchase of lower-priced tablets as “impulsive” for many customers, but based on their experience, will be more feature-led, rather price-led, in future.

Impulsive
She said: “There are a lot of factors to consider when buying a new tablet, from connectivity to screen size, but the reality is that a lot of people have made a decision based on price.

“There has been a huge amount in promotion of lower-end devices, like Tesco’s Hudl, and they have become an almost impulsive purchase rather than an IT decision.”

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