First, let’s look at the major differences between tablet devices and desktop computers:
- Tablets can be taken everywhere: airplanes, buses, waiting rooms, the back seat of a car to entertain children…literally, everywhere.
- PCs are stationary but have much larger computing power than tablets. If you have some serious computer-based work to do, it is almost imperative that you have access to a desktop computer, a proper keyboard, and a mouse.
- People consume video much more on a tablet than on a PC. For the average U.S. consumer, they will spend 33 minutes watching video on their tablet device, as opposed to 22 minutes on their PC. Again, this is largely due to a tablet’s portability: you can stretch out on your couch or your favorite recliner and dial up a movie on Netflix. If you’re viewing a video on your PC, you’ll be perched on your computer chair, your face inches from the large monitor. It is estimated that by 2018, 70% of all digital video viewing will be done on a tablet.
- PCs generate the most ad revenue. And most websites— except for the very few that require a monthly subscription fee —get all of their revenue from advertising.
Tablets and PCs Battle
And there you have it. Even though the advance of tablet devices such as Apple’s iPad, Microsoft’s Surface, Samsung’s Galaxy, etc. continues to infiltrate the marketplace, the majority of the money made on the internet is coming from PCs. Advertising is the grease that keeps the entire internet running. And most of that grease comes from the PC market.
There are a few reasons for this. A PC’s monitor is much bigger than that of a tablet and hence, it can display much larger and a much higher number of ads. Ads geared for PCs can be as simple as banner ads, as complex as animated video ads, and as annoying as pop-up ads. The ads that appear on a tablet are much smaller in comparison, harder to see, and easier to avoid. The ad revenue from tablets just isn’t there, and won’t be for a long time.
So if you’ve ever wondered why the convenient and portable tablets haven’t completely overtaken the PC market, the reason is ad revenue. Sure, there are a few technical details that a tablet has to compromise on so it can be as small and portable as it is, but remember: it always comes back to the money.