The immediate productivity gains promised by touch-enabled devices coming to market in 2010 will be slow to turn up in the enterprise and fewer than 10% of PCs sold to enterprises in 2015 will have touchscreens, according to a new report from research and advisory firm Gartner.
Gartner said that touch-enabled devices will have slow adoption in the enterprise, due to heavy requirements for typing and text input. Earliest adopters of touch-enabled devices will be consumers who rarely deal with legacy issues and will be looking for entertainment and casual gaming applications.
Leslie Fiering, research vice president at Gartner, said: What we’re going to see is the younger generation beginning to use touchscreen computers ahead of enterprises. By 2015, we expect more than 50% of PCs purchased for users under the age of 15 will have touchscreens, up from fewer than 2% in 2009. On the other hand, we are predicting that fewer than 10% of PCs sold to enterprises in 2015 for mainstream knowledge workers will have touchscreens.
The firm predicts iPhone and touch-enabled smartphone users will want to extend the multitouch experience to their PC computing. iPad and the overwhelming majority of slate, tablet and touch-enabled convertible devices planned for 2010 will have a consumer focus.
According to Gartner, one of the key target usages for the next wave of tablets will be media content consumption (movies, newspapers and e-books), and the success driver for entertainment devices will be the content delivery ecosystem.
The research firm said education will become a major market for touch and pen-enabled devices – as prices drop. Conversely, enterprises will be slow to adopt touch input for mainstream knowledge workers. The legacy enterprise applications that don’t leverage touch, and the large contingent of mouse, will make many enterprises doubt the business case for adding touch.
MsFiering said: As with many recent technology advances, touch adoption will be led by consumers and only gradually get accepted by the enterprise. What will be different here is the expected widespread adoption of touch by education, so that an entire generation will graduate within the next 10 to 15 years for whom touch input is totally natural.”