A report from an Israeli Web vendor has found that—when examining mobile activity from operators in Western Europe and Asia in March 2013—tablet users are more likely to shop online and browse news site than their smartphone counterparts.
The Flash Networks statement that it had found "that people who browse on tablets are twice as likely to go to shopping sites, and three times more likely to browse news sites than people who browse on smartphones. Conversely, those who browse on smartphones are more than twice as likely as tablet users to engage in social networking activity, such as Facebook and LinkedIn."
The social media activity makes sense, given the need for immediacy on constantly changing social site pages. But the interesting phrasing here—which is fully consistent with almost all prior studies on this point—is that browser users are twice as likely "to go to" E-Commerce sites, as opposed to buy on said sites. We have seen most studies find that tablets—especially when they are brand-new—are compelling for shopping and browsing because of their larger screens and better resolution. But when it comes to consummating those purchases, desktops still blow away both laptops and smartphones.
That's likely temporary, though, as auto-fill programs for tablets catch up, alleviating the burden of typing in address and payment details. Also, the nature of the tablet is quite effective for looking and choosing during empty moments on trains, sitting in waiting rooms or while waiting for an airplane, but the decision point is best done back at home or at the office. This has less to do the nature of a tablet than the places it's most likely to be used and whether shoppers are going to want to make final decisions—and pay for purchases—in those locations.