Screen size dictates use of smart mobiles: NPD In-Stat

by K C Krishnadas, TechOnline India - January 12, 2012

More than half the respondents cited personal information management as a top use for laptops/notebooks

While just about everybody today has a mobile device but whether that device is a laptop, smartphone, portable media player (PMPs), or tablet is dependent on several factors. A survey by NPD In-Stat ( outlines respondents’ attitudes and behaviors toward key smart mobile devices. 

One key finding was that the size of the screen creates an optimal use case for the device.  Specifically, larger screen devices seem to fulfill productive needs while smaller screen devices tend to satisfy communication or entertainment needs.

The findings are based on survey results derived from In-Stat's Technology Adoption Panel of technology users and decision makers who contribute their opinions and insights about technology usage and issues in the workplace and at home. This particular survey is focused on laptops, tablets, smartphones, and portable media players.

“The majority of tablet owners have a screen size between 9 and 11 inches—a size optimized for sophisticated uses that require a lot of interaction. The top uses for tablets are web browsing, email, and downloading and using applications, which are productivity-based uses."

The larger screen supports more heavy text consumption and greater user interaction.  Portable media players, which can be virtually identical to tablets except for the smaller-than-5-inch screen, are used primarily to support entertainment-focused uses, like listening to music and watching video,” said Stephanie Ethier, Senior Analyst

Other finds of the research include:

• 47% of the respondents had a PMP with a screen size from 2.5 to less than 5 inches.
• Apple is the prohibitive favorite tablet device.
• 54% of the respondents cited personal information management as a top use for laptops/notebooks.
• Smartphones are the most often used device while watching TV.

For a free sample of the report and more information, contact Elaine Potter at

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