Are tablets already on their way out? - KMSP-TV

iPad sales decline

Are tablets already on their way out?

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Apple Inc. photo Apple Inc. photo
NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

Four years ago, tablet owners starting raving about the market's newest piece of mobile technology. Users like Nicole Wright and her 11-year-old son Kaleb haven't stopped.

"... Samsung Galaxy 4, mini iPad, the Samsung Galaxy Note, the Kindle Fire. There isn't a tablet I haven't had," Nicole says.

And, evidently, manufacturers of other devices noticed, enlarging their phone screens and slimming their laptops.

Last quarter, Apple iPad sales fell by 9 percent.

Some of the earliest tablet buyers we spoke to admitted to neglect:

"I never use it."

"I hardly use it."

"A laptop you have more flexibility to do work on than a tablet."

Still, forecasting the death of the tablet seems premature and incorrect. More likely, all our devices are cross-breeding and evolving until all our calling, emailing, texting, messaging, Internetting, TV watching, all our communication happens on one mobile gadget.

"Only if the device can be hyper-flexible and I literally mean flexible, like that you can bend it, so you can have it like this, you can roll it in your pocket, take a piece of it, put it on your wrist," Mashable's Lance Ulanoff says. "Until that happens -- and that's way out there -- we're still going to have different devices for different purposes."

Ulanoff includes the tablet among those different devices meeting any suggestion it might soon "die" with serious skepticism: "No, that's ridiculous."

For the decline in sales, Ulanoff blames market saturation -- those who want them have them -- and meticulous construction. Manufacturers built these to last, so they release upgrades less frequently than they might for cell phones.

When one considers the potential for growth in other countries, Ulanoff foresees a long life ahead for the tablet.

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