market research on tablets+smartphonesSmartphone and tablet adoption is increasing dramatically in the U.S., which is having an impact on how U.S. consumers shop and consume media, according to a new report from mobile advertising network operator InMobi and Mobext, the mobile marketing arm of Havas Digital.

Some 29.5 million Americans now own tablets, 11% of the U.S. population, according to the partners’  “The Role of Connected Devices in the Consumer Sales Journey” survey and report, which examines media consumption habits of more than 9,600 PC, smartphone and tablet device users in seven different markets.

Smartphone and tablet use is additive to the total time Americans are using connected devices, InMobi and Mobext found. Respondents are spending more time using their mobile devices, with “time spent on smartphones and tablets playing a significant role in purchasing decisions.”

For example, researchers noted that more than 60% of U.S. tablet owners spend at least 30 minutes each day accessing media content, while 52% use their tablets during what was previously considered down, or “dead” time. “These results confirm our position on the importance of integrating tablets into multi-channel campaigns from the start. Our ‘mobile first’ mantra for creative tablet- and mobile-specific solutions for clients continues to enhance their brands,” Mobext U.S. Managing Director Phuc Truong stated.

At the same time, connected devices are cannibalizing other forms of entertainment and media consumption and shopping, the survey revealed. After purchasing a tablet, 28% of owners said they had stopped reading books in print. Another 29% said they had stopped using their PCs or laptops to surf the Internet. Some 48% agreed that it was the “appealing design” of tablets, as well as accessibility, that make them easier to use for accessing content than a PC or laptop.

Because tablets make it easier to shop online, 22% of tablet users reported they shop less in physical stores in an average month since purchasing their devices. Fifty-five percent use their tablets to make purchases in an average month.

Shopping online via tablets and smartphones has by and large overtaken that of PCs and laptops, according to the survey results.  Shopping online via tablet peaks at home between 6 p.m. and midnight for most owners. Fifty-five percent of respondents reported first learning about a product on their tablet, 53% actively evaluate products and 58% said they then follow through and make purchases using their tablets.

“We are seeing a radical, steady shift from all other media channels to mobile –and so much of this momentum is owed to the transformative experiences connected devices are providing mobile consumers,” InMobi VP and North America Managing Director Anne Frisbie commented. “We need to continue to look at mobile as a new channel that requires innovative ways of engaging with consumers while they are online at home or away from their desks as mobile continues to transform media consumption and shopping.”

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