Tablet sales set to soar 28% this year to $64 billion

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As numerous industry analysts have long predicted, tablets continue to expand in popularity even as PC sales hit an all-time slump. ABI Research is the latest firm to lend its voice to the chorus singing of tablet growth, forecasting a 28 percent bump in tablet sales for 2013. Consequently, worldwide tablet revenues are expected to increase to a healthy $64 billion.

"The convenience and mobility benefits afforded by tablet computers are showing no signs of slowing interest after record unit shipments and revenues were reported by device vendors in 2012," ABI Research noted.

In addition to a revenue and sales boon for 2013, shipments are expected to increase by 38 percent to 250 million.

According to ABI, about 60 percent of last year's tablet shipments were iDevices while 37 percent housed some form of Android. Only three percent were some flavor of Windows or BlackBerry OS.

Meanwhile, Android-based tablets continue to gain on Apple's iPad line-up. Other analysts have also echoed this sentiment while some believe Android could finally overtake iOS later this year.

"The tide is definitely turning," said mobile devices senior practice director Jeff Orr in favor of Android tablets. However, he doesn't suspect that Apple will rest on its laurels while its market share continues to be chipped away.

ABI also warns that strong sales of the iPad Mini may be cannibalizing a significant portion of Apple's sales, particularly for its larger and more profitable (per unit) iPad. The firm believes 2013 will be the year in which industry analysts can determine just how significant that overlap is.

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