Tablets kick-start shopping revolution

22 May 2012


We're going to be shopping more on our tablets, according to research

The rise of the internet has seen many of us opt to pick up a new TV from the comfort of our living room rather than heading out onto the high street, with the web allowing us to wander from virtual store to virtual store at the click of a mouse.

But if you thought our shopping habits were settling down, think again. Latest research has shown that there's more change to come over the coming 10 years - and it's all down to  tablets and smartphones, apparently.

Barclays Corporate said that in 10 years we will be forking out nearly £20 billion a year for goods bought via the devices. Its research showed that annual spending on  tablets and phones would go from £1.3 billion this year to £19.3 billion in 2021.

It's even slapped a moniker on the brand of shopping, too, calling it "m-commerce". So the next time the other half asks you whether you're 'shopping again' you can say 'no, I'm looking into some m-commerce'. It will likely keep them off your backs for a bit, anyway.

Richard Lowe, head of retail and wholesale at Barclays Corporate, said: "M-commerce is still a relatively niche channel accounting for 0.5% of total retail spend. However... the real growth opportunities lie on the virtual high street."

The research from 3,000 consumers across the UK predicted that over the next half-decade mobile commerce will grow 55%, accounting for 4.9% of total retail sales by 2021.

But what are people buying on their  tablets and phones? Well, the most popular stuff is food and groceries, with almost £300 million sales this year.

Another thing that people have enjoyed buying on  tablets and smartphones is electrical goods. This year sales are expected to reach £290 million, suggesting there are clearly plenty of people out there who get a buzz from using tech to buy tech! In fact, a decade from now the figure is expected to reach £2.1 billion - that's a heck of a lot of  games consoles, don't you think?

So, next time you log on to your tablet to buy a  sandwich toaster - or some sandwiches, even - take comfort in the fact that, sitting on the sofa, or even on the train, you're part of a fully fledged shopping revolution.

Have you joined the tablet shopping revolution yet? Comment below...