Sales of tablet computers overtake desktop PC's on eBay

New entrants to tablet market will further boost UK mobile spending - eBay With the UK launch of the...



New entrants to tablet market will further boost UK mobile spending - eBay


With the UK launch of the Blackberry Playbook this week, eBay can reveal that sales of tablet computers and accessories on the UK site have increased ten-fold over the past year. Over the past 12 months, sales of tablet computers on have overtaken traditional desktop PCs as consumers seek portable alternatives. In the UK, a tablet computer is sold via eBay approximately every 3 minutes.

The popularity of tablets is contributing to significant growth in mobile sales, as consumers increasingly want to shop on the move or in a more ‘laid back’ style in the home. Mobile continues to be the fastest growing part of eBay’s business, with global mobile sales expected to double again in 2011 to over $4 billion. In May 2011, sales of tablets accounted for around 15% of computers sold on, compared to around 3% at the same time last year. Laptops and netbooks accounted for around 70% of computer sales last month on eBay in the UK, compared to almost 80% in May 2010.

Angus McCarey, Retail Director for eBay UK said:

“People shop differently on mobile and tablets versus traditional PCs: they spend more money , do more browsing and purchase across a wider variety of products. iPad shoppers on eBay spend approximately 40% more than an average iPhone user, and we expect to see similar trends with other tablet users.”

“Competition and innovation in the tablet computer market will continue to change the way people shop, as more and more consumers become part of the mobile shopping trend. So far this year, eBay has attracted 300,000 new customers globally making their first purchase via one of the mobile apps.”

The findings of a recent eBay study carried out by Verdict found that mobile shopping could deliver a £4.5bn boost to Britain’s economy by 2016 and a further £13bn by 2021. The research also revealed that m-commerce is on the verge of a potential four-fold increase over the next five years as consumers become more comfortable with shopping via smartphones and tablet computers.



  • Founded in 1999, is the UK’s largest online shopping destination, providing a platform for over 17.7m unique visitors per month to buy and sell new, unique and used items in a fun and easy way.
  • Far from an online auction house, eBay currently has 17 million live listings on the UK site, with fixed price goods accounting for the majority (60%) of items sold globally.
  • Sellers of all sizes, including 180,000 registered businesses and over 30 high-street retailers use to reach the UK’s largest online shopping audience.
  • eBay supports buyers and sellers by promoting the best value deals through Daily Deals, and the eBay Outlet sells products from well known brands at up to 70% off the recommended retail price. Follow for alerts to great deals on eBay and beyond.
  • is owned by eBay Inc, which has expanded to include some of the strongest brands in the world, including eBay, PayPal, StubHub,, and others.

eBay mobile facts

  • Over 19 million people have now downloaded the core iPhone eBay app across the globe.
  • eBay mobile users are visiting the mobile website 10-15 times a day
  • eBay has enjoyed 300,000 new eBay users thanks to mobile
  • eBay mobile applications are available in more than 190 countries and eight languages.
  • eBay mobile apps have been downloaded over 35 million times globally.
  • Mobile shoppers on have bought more than 30 million items through iPhone and WAP since July 2008.
  • There are up to 380,000 daily visits to via mobile apps, and more than 170,000 UK mobile shoppers spend over £30 with the eBay mobile app per week.
  • In 2010, global eBay sales via a mobile device more than tripled, generating $2 billion in sales – up from $600m in 2009. This is set to double again in 2011 to over $4 billion.
  • Globally an item is purchased every second using the eBay app.


  • The estimate of current and future spending levels via mobile is calculated using Verdict’s nationwide estimates of current and future m-commerce spending combined with eBay’s own detailed regional data on current m-commerce spending levels.