Tablets, Notebooks Popular Back-to-School Buys

Of those who plan to purchase a tablet, 39 percent plan to purchase an iPad, a BuyVia survey found.

One-third of consumers plan to purchase a tablet for back to school this year, one-fifth plan to purchase a laptop, another one-fifth plan to purchase both a tablet and laptop and about another one-third don’t have any plans to purchase a new device this year, according to the results of a survey by Web-based shopping guide BuyVia.

The results also revealed that of those who plan to purchase a tablet, 39 percent plan to purchase an iPad, 23 percent plan to purchase the Samsung Galaxy Tab, 17 percent plan to purchase the iPad Mini, 17 percent plan to purchase the Kindle Fire and 5 percent plan to purchase something else (an Asus, Google Nexus, Microsoft Surface or some other tablet). Of those who will be purchasing a notebook, 81 percent said they will be purchasing a PC and 19 percent plan on purchasing a Mac.

"Tablets are definitely gaining momentum as an essential device for back-to-school shopping this season, and it’s no surprise that the iPad remains the most popular tablet," Norman Fong, CEO and co-founder of BuyVia, said in a statement. "What’s interesting, however, is that while iPads remain the most popular tablet, PCs reign over Macs when it comes to laptop purchase preferences this year. This could be due to the significant price difference between PC laptops and Macs and an attribute to what parents are willing to spend."

The results found that 39 percent of consumers plan to do some of their back to school shopping online this year, 24 percent plan to do half of their shopping online, 17 percent plan to do the majority of their shopping online, 12 percent won’t be doing any shopping online, 6 percent will be doing all of their shopping online and 4 percent won’t be doing any back to school shopping.

"Clearly consumers are becoming more comfortable with online shopping and are buying more electronics online. For example, today the Nexus 7 tablet was released. Older generations were only available direct from Google, but the Nexus 7 is available via Amazon, Office Max, Best Buy and others," Fong said in an email interview. "The distribution ecosystem on the Android side is significantly increasing. This is because of consumer demand and exemplifies that consumers want to buy more electronics products, hence they need to be more widely available."

While consumers may be feeling more comfortable shopping online—they’re not growing any more patient. A recent survey by cloud and Web application monitoring software provider Monitis found 56 percent of consumers who spend more than two hours per week shopping online have cancelled an order due to an error or slow response time. In addition, almost three-quarters (74 percent) of all online shoppers said that they would switch to a competing online vendor if they could find a better user experience and faster Website than the one they currently use.