How important will tablet PCs be this year in driving consumers to stores and increasing sales?
Tom Roper, SED International:
They will be hot, hot, hot! Stores that are in the small-electronics business and sell cellphones and/or computers will have major traffic on this product category. They will be popular as graduation, Father’s Day and Mother’s Day gifts, and folks looking for an inexpensive Internet device.
Warren Chaiken, Almo:
Sales of Tablet PCs will definitely drive storefront visits and drive a lot of sales volume this year. However, with the exceptional level of competition, tablets will be another low-margin product line. Retailers will need to focus on accessory sales to increase their margin per sale numbers.
Fred Towns, New Age Electronics:
Tablets are the “it” product this year, and it is very important for retailers to have a variety to offer their customers. Retailers need to make sure that their customers don’t have misconceptions on what experiences they can have using tablets. They are very cool and great for surfing the web, emailing and sharing content. However, they aren’t intended to be as featurerich as PCs for use in business applications.
Jeff Davis, D&H Distributing:
Tablet PCs will very important in driving traffic. We anticipate the tablet space to become a very large and quick-starting category. The devices we saw at CES were very compelling, showing that a diverse group of products and operating systems are definitely on the horizon. And as with the launch of the iPod and digital media players, tablets will generate a universe of accessories to help boost sales.
Dennis Holzer, Powerhouse Alliance:
Tablets will be very important and will bring consumers into stores both for education on their capabilities and purchase. Because of their size, performance and portability, consumers are opting for tablets in lieu of laptops and notebooks.
Laptops will continue to be purchased for home use, but tablets and accessories will be the fastest-growing segment and draw in electronics this year. In addition, because of their draw, we look for sales in related electronic categories to also increase.
Michael Flink, ADI North America:
Tablet PCs are going to be huge this year. Users want the latest technology, and tablet PCs offer mobility, advanced functionality, a compact and convertible design, and more. Google’s Android platform has helped this market grow rapidly, and allowed manufacturers to introduce a collection of new tablet PCs. As the market continues to get crowded, it provides more choices and price levels for buyers. It is also clear that tablet PCs will eventually replace the expensive touchscreens as home system controllers.
Jeff Kussard, Capitol:
If CES is any indicator, 2011 will be the year of the tablet. This is good news for those of us who are anxious to see a real uptick in CE sales. Consumers are going to be wowed by all the new and exciting products from all three relevant platforms.