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Parks Associates Releases Stats on Holiday Shopping: Game Consoles and Tablets Competing Neck-and-Neck for Dollars

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Believe it or not, it’s that time of the year again – where the Halloween candy-filled aisles quickly are replaced with tinsel and twinkling lights. For those of you in charge of the holiday shopping, this season can be a little anxiety-ridden as you scour the Internet and department store shelves for some of the year;s most coveted gifts. In the spirit of gift-giving, Parks Associates has released their annual consumer electronics-specific purchase intentions report, providing shoppers with a glance at this season’s hottest CE gear.

New CE shopping research from Parks Associates finds tablets and game consoles are virtually tied among U.S. consumers for planned purchases in the 2013 holiday season. Parks Associates’ research 2013 Holiday CE Purchase Intentions reports purchase interest in game consoles has rebounded after tablets surged ahead in the 2012 holiday season. Parks Associates analysts say comparable percentages of U.S. broadband households purchased tablets and game consoles in 2011, and if current intentions reflect 2013 purchases, game consoles will soon be back on an equal footing with tablets.

“Tablets are poised to be a big seller this Black Friday and holiday season, with Apple, Microsoft, and Nokia announcing new models, but the launch of new game consoles from Microsoft and Sony may steal their momentum,” said Harry Wang, Director, Health & Mobile Product Research, Parks Associates. “2013 will not be a repeat of 2012 as 18% of broadband households currently plan to purchase a tablet over the holidays vs. 16% for a game console. By comparison, in the 2012 holiday season, 19% purchased a tablet, and 11% purchased a game console.”

“New consoles offer a bigger ‘feature jump’ relative to tablets,” said Brett Sappington, Director, Research, Parks Associates. “The tablets on sale this holiday season will be thinner, some with faster processors, but otherwise comparable to those sold last year. Consoles have had a major upgrade in terms of resolution, processing power, new features, and new titles. Already 14% of all U.S. broadband households use a connected game console to stream video, and the enhancements in the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One will further expand the console use cases.”

Parks Associates research finds nearly 55% of U.S. broadband households now own a tablet and 60% will have one by the end of 2013. Currently 61% of U.S. broadband households own a game console.

Additional tablet research from Parks Associates:

- Within a 30-day period, 27% of tablet owners make an in-app purchase.
- Tablet owners are 1.3 times more likely than smartphone owners to purchase a product using a shopping app.
- 24% of tablet owners in U.S. broadband households watch six or more hours of premium online video (TV shows and movies) on the device each week.

2013 Holiday CE Purchase Intentions features consumer research from a nationwide survey of 2,500 U.S. broadband households fielded in 4Q 2013. Data on other CE devices are also available. Interested in learning more? Be sure to visit www.parksassociates.com for the latest findings.

And tell us — do you have a game console or tablet on this year’s holiday wish list?

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