Tablets are for old people, women and those who like playing games, apparently

tablets are for old people women and those who like playing games apparently flurryWhat are tablet computers for?

The answer changes depending on who you ask, of course; for manufacturers, the answer may be “whatever you want,” pointing out the various features that allow for Internet browsing, social media, streaming video content, whatever app you want to enjoy… For users, I suspect, the answer may reflect the particular tablet device that they purchased: Kindle users are more likely to talk about enjoying reading, whereas iPad users may talk about media browsing, and so on. But according to a new study by a mobile analytics company, there’s one thing that towers over everything else when it comes to what people want to do with their tablets… and that’s play some games.

The study, by analysts Flurry, looked at more than 6 billion app sessions on around 500 million mobile devices – both smartphones and tablets – during September 2012, and found that games take up the majority of tablet users’ time: Although gaming is also the most popular activity on smartphones, taking up around 39 percent of usage for the month, it makes up a surprising 67 percent of usage for tablet devices.

“At a high level, consumers spend more time using tablets for media and entertainment, including Games (67%), Entertainment (9%) and News (2%) categories which account for nearly four-fifths of consumption on tablets… Further reinforcing that tablets are ‘media machines’ is the fact that consumers spend 71% more of their time using games on tablets they spend doing so on smartphones.” explained Flurry’s Peter Farago, who went on to point out that smartphones had – understandably – a higher profile when it came to methods of communication.

Additionally, tablet apps are used less often than those for smartphones (9.5 times a week for tablet, versus 12.9 times a week for smartphones), but they are used for twice as long on average, with tablet apps being active for 8.2 minutes against smartphones’ 4.1 minutes. Overall, mobile devices in general build steadily in usage throughout the day until a peak around 9pm, before quickly falling back as the night continues (Tablets have the edge in terms of usage in evenings, while phones have a slight edge during the day).

The difference between tablet usage and smartphone usage? According to Farago, the key might be the different demographics for the two types of devices. “”Tablet users are older, more female, and we can surmise, more affluent,” he summizes, adding that “they use more during the evenings and for longer sessions [and] consume more media and entertainment experiences, with a significant proportion spent on games [than smartphone users].”

As someone who tends to spend far more time on tablet than smartphone (and, yes, in the evenings, too), I find myself oddly disquieted to discover that this makes me older in terms of demographic. But, in my defense, I’m not using it to play games.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: AI-powered cat toys, wallets, and food containers

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Home Theater

Google Chromecast and Chromecast Ultra: Everything you need to know

Google's Chromecast plugs into your TV's HDMI port, allowing you to stream content from your tablet, laptop, or smartphone directly to your TV. Here's what you need to know about all iterations, including the 4K-ready Chromecast Ultra.
Product Review

Samsung’s Galaxy Book 2 is a Surface Pro alternative with one big advantage

The 2-in-1 form factor is clearly a big deciding factor for anyone looking to buy a new device, which is why Samsung is again getting in the action this year with the new Galaxy Book 2.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.

Camera shootout! Testing the latest Pixel, iPhone, and Galaxy Note in real life

Which takes the best photos, the Pixel 3 XL, iPhone XS Max, Galaxy Note 9, or Pixel 2 XL? We put the cameras on all these top-notch phones through their paces to see which performs best in the real world, from low light to portrait mode…

Sams's Club offers $100 gift cards for iPhone XR pre-orders

After months of rumors and speculation, Apple has finally taken the wraps off of the new iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR. Now that the phones are out, you might be wondering how you can get them for yourself.
Product Review

Amazon’s child-friendly tablet is the complete package

Kids are tough on electronics and it’s difficult to police screen time and manage what they’re doing. The Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition could be the affordable answer to your prayers, with a rugged case and worry-free warranty.

It’s about time! A USB-C magnetic charger for the Apple Watch has finally arrived

While most of the buzz surrounding Apple has been about the iPhone XR, the company also introduced a new Apple Watch accessory. Starting October 24, a USB-C magnetic charger will be available for purchase.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro vs. P20 Pro: Which 2018 Huawei flagship is best for you?

If you're tempted by Huawei's latest flagship, the Mate 20 Pro, but you're uncertain how it differs from the P20 Pro which Huawei released earlier this year, then we have you covered. Find out exactly what sets these two phones apart.
Product Review

Simple, smart, and affordable, Google’s USB-C earbuds are a must-buy

Google’s follow-up to its wireless Pixel Buds are the wired Google Pixel USB-C earbuds. It’s the simpler route, but the earbuds are still smart, deliver good sound, and -- best of all -- they’re affordable.

Strapped after your latest smartphone purchase? Check out our favorite MVNOs

Looking to switch from a major carrier to something a little more affordable? Luckily, there are a ton of great MVNO options to choose from. Check out our guide to the best MVNOs, from Boost Mobile to Google Project Fi.

How to take great photos with the iPhone XS, Apple’s finest camera phone yet

The iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max feature the best cameras yet seen on an Apple smartphone, ready for you to get out and take great photos. Here's our guide to help ensure each shot you take is a winner.

If you're light on memory, these are the best lite apps for Android and iOS

Looking to save data, storage, and reduce performance issues? Lite apps and Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) are the best options. Here's our roundup of lite apps and PWAs for all the most popular apps on the market.

Master your new LG phone with these V40 ThinQ tips and tricks

With five cameras and awesome specs, the LG V40 ThinQ is one of the most innovative phones of 2018. While the V40 can get a great shot in any scenario, it's capable of so much more. Here are a few of our favorite tips and tricks.