Les, I agree the smartphone meets most of the same needs as the tablet -- except those which really demand a larger screen. Most office apps are a bit too painful on the small smartphone screen, and creative apps like photo & video editing, while possible on a smartphone, really benefit from the tablet's larger screen.
I found this very interesting too. Since the beginning of tablet, I have been trying to come up reasons to support the rate of growth. I believe price is one major factor. In addition, ease of use has contribute to better market penetration. Grandpa and grandma might have difficult time to learn how to use PC. They can use tablet to talk to their grandson with a few clicks. Availability of wide variety of apps of no or low cost is another factor. Competition that drives the price down is another. Last but not least, the social networking has a big factor to it. Checking your FB status through a tablet or smartphone takes a couple seconds to a minute. Doing the same thing through a PC, you will need to wait for the PC to power up which already takes 1 minute.
With the saturation, cost of tablet will be forced to come down even future. Now, the challenge is what is the next high value product that will attract enough people to open a new market.
Of course, this depends on how exactly one defines a developing country. But there is no specific figure in this particular report on the rate of growth ind eveloping coutnries. Needless to say, it is important for Apple to get its act together in the lower end of the market otherwise it could lose significant market share.
The need for tablets is declining as more and more devices populate the IT ecosystem. That said, it is increasingly--apparently--IT managers rather than consumers who are installing tablets in workplace environments. This suggests that there may be some area for growth outside of where tablets have succeeded to this point, which is with consumers.
While tab is nice to have, its not necessary requirement, if you have a highend smartphone you dont need tab.
@Sheetal, I agree with you. But many tablets can be easily converted to laptop by connecting external hardware keyboard. I think its better to invest in such tablets rater than buying laptop because you can use the same device as tablet and laptop.