Tablets are transforming the way content is consumed and challenging the usage patterns for personal computers, according to the J.D. Power and Associates “2012 U.S. Tablet Satisfaction Study.”

The inaugural “Tablet Satisfaction Study” finds that tablet owners spend 7.5 hours per week browsing the Internet, watching videos, listening to music, and reading books on their device, compared with spending 9.6 hours per week on a personal computer for the same activities. Overall satisfaction is 857 (on a 1,000-point scale) among owners who view three or more hours of video per week on their tablet, which is 45 points higher than among those who do not. In addition, those who spend three or more hours viewing video content are more likely to purchase another tablet from their current manufacturer in the future than are those who do not watch as much video content (90% vs. 81%, respectively).  

“As tablet computing, multimedia, display, and application offerings continue to evolve, their impact on usage patterns will continue to grow,” says Dr. Uma S. Jha, senior director of mobile devices at J.D. Power and Associates. “Tablets are a force in the marketplace that offer a great alternative to laptops and netbooks.”

The study measures tablet owner satisfaction among those who have owned their tablet for less than two years. Satisfaction is measured across five key factors. In order of importance, they are: performance (26%), ease of operation (22%), styling and design (19%), features (17%), and price (16%).

Apple ranks highest, achieving a score of 848, and performs well in four factors: performance; ease of operation; styling and design; and features. Amazon (842) closely follows Apple in the rankings and performs particularly well in the price factor.

The study also finds the following key tablet usage patterns and purchase trends:
Tablet owners who also have a smartphone spend 40% more time browsing the Internet on their tablet than on their smartphone. Similarly, they spend 56% more time using gaming apps on their tablet than on their smartphone.

One-fourth (25%) of owners indicate they use their tablet for business purposes. More than one-third (37%) of tablet owners say they’re likely to buy a new tablet within the next 12 months.

Among tablet owners who are highly satisfied (those rating their device 10 on a 10-point scale), 90% say they’re likely to purchase additional consumer electronic devices from the same manufacturer. Three-fourths (75%) of tablet owners indicate they were the sole decision-maker in purchasing their device. More than one-half (61%) of owners share their device with at least one other person.