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01 March 2024

Have iPads hit the newspapers hard?

By Joseph George

Are professionals in the Middle East more addicted to their iPads than anywhere else in the world? According to a recent survey IT professionals and business decision makers in the region are buying fewer books and newspapers after they got an iPad and for many of them have been a preference over television.

According to IDG Connect's “iPad for business survey”, the iPad is driving radical changes in content consumption. “While the iPad is disrupting the traditional market definitions of hardware manufacturers, arguably, however, tablet computing poses even bigger challenges for media owners,” the report said.

The survey based on interviews with IT and business decision makers across every continent points out that for nearly three quarters of the respondents owning an iPad has reduced the frequency with which they purchase newspapers and books. “These markets for physical media are already in decline. On this evidence, tablet computing will hasten their demise. For advertising funded media (newspapers and magazines), the challenges are particularly substantial. Readers who can afford iPads tend to be more demographically desirable than those who cannot. The danger for media owners is that migration to tablet consumption will “top-slice” their audiences, denying them the opportunity to monetize their most valuable readers via print advertising, which remains relatively lucrative,” the report said.

However not all have decided to abandon the traditional media. About 47 per cent of respondents in South America, 64 per cent in Europe and 67 per cent in North America said they are least likely to continue buying newspapers once they acquire an iPad. This is compared to 90 per cent in Asia and 80 par cent in Asia and the Middle East.

The survey also points out that nearly a quarter of respondents have their iPad supplied by work, a statistic which climbs sharply in continents like Africa (47 per cent) and Europe (40 per cent). In addition to this, a surprising 51 per cent of those surveyed always use the device at work, almost as many who always use it at home (54 per cent). In the Middle East and Africa, over 70 per cent always use it at work and less than half always use it at home. Among the other findings of the survey are that a majority of 97 per cent  of professionals use the iPad for reading, while for another 72 per cent iPad means less of laptops.

The survey also revealed a robust loyalty to Apple with 83 per cent globally stating they would not consider buying a different tablet device next time.

In the Middle East only four per cent said that they would consider buying a different tablet next time.