Posted October 30, 2012 3:32 pm by with 0 comments

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Before I bought my iPad, I thought tablets were just over-grown iPhones; bigger screen and keyboard (nice) but too bulky to fit in my purse (not so nice.) Then I bought one and everything changed. Certainly, there’s a quantity of crossover between the two mobile devices but a year down the road, each one has its own purpose in my mind.

Phone calls, texting, coupon apps and music are all a part of my iPhone. Social TV apps, online shopping, writing, and video are all handled by my iPad. And then there are games. I have games on both devices but 90% of the time, I’m playing them on my tablet.

What’s the rest of the world doing? Have a look at this chart from Flurry.

The What

Even thought I play the majority of my games on my iPad, I was surprised to see the category taking up so much of the tablet pie. What’s missing from this chart are shopping-related activities. I guess that falls into Lifestyle or Other.

I’m fascinated by the fact that News didn’t even make the Smartphone chart. I’d guess this goes to readability. A smartphone screen will do in a pinch but the tablet delivers a much more comfortable and engaging experience. I’m going to figure that the Health and Fitness category takes in all those apps that count your calories while you’re out and measure your fat loss when you run. And then there’s Social Networking which eats up almost a quarter of smartphone usage but is less popular on the tablet. Again, I’m thinking its a case of updating on the fly. When you see Brad Pitt at the grocery store, it’s more likely you’ll have your phone handy, not your tablet. “It’s not a journey, the journey is just the 405. This is lunch.” [Twitpic]

 The Who

The Flurry study also shows that tablet owners skew slightly older with an average age of 34. Smartphone owners average out at 30. The gender split is pretty close to 50-50 with smartphones leaning slightly more male (56% vs 51%). Not surprisingly, tablet owners are usually more affluent.

The When and Where

Looking strictly at time, smartphone users whip out their phone more often but use it in shorter bursts with an average of 4.1 minutes per session.

Tablet users don’t crack them open as often, but once they do, they spend an average of 8.2 minutes before pressing the power down button. This alone is proof that tablets provide a better landscape for content and ads. They’re simply more engaging in the long term.

Finally, Flurry looked at dayparts and found that both devices peak between 7 and 10 at night but for tablets, it’s a much sharper rise. Again, this points to the fact that smartphones are tools we use while we’re on the go, but we settle down and relax with our tablets at night.

Has anyone created a tablet app that looks and sounds like a contented, purring cat? That would be the perfect couch companion for when I watch TV at night.

How do you use your iPad?