Shipments of devices across the globe are expected to reach 2.5 billion units this year, a 6.9 per cent increase on 2013, according to Gartner.

The device market includes traditional PCs (both desktop and laptop), tablet computers, ultramobiles, and mobile phones. Essentially everything but the Internet of Things.

Shipments grew by 4.8 per cent in 2013, so predicted growth is up in 2014.

From traditional to tablet

Tablet shipments are expected to soar from 195.4 million units in 2013 to 270.7 million this year, a jump of 38.6 per cent. Mobile phones will also see strong growth, from 1.8 billion to 1.9 billion.

Ultramobiles, including hybrid and clamshell models, will see significant growth from 21.1 million to 37.2 million.

Unsurprisingly, traditional PCs are set to take a hit, falling from 296.1 million units last year to 276.7 million in 2014.

Operating systems

Android will continue to dominate, with shipments jumping from 879.8 million in 2013 to 1.2 billion in 2014, and further to almost 1.4 billion in 2015.

iOS will also see strong growth, albeit with more modest figures. Shipments in 2013 were 241.4 million, and this will hit 286.4 million this year, before reaching 324.5 million units next year.

Windows won't be left behind, with the classic operating system seeing growth from 325.1 million units in 2013 to 339.1 million this year, and 379.3 million in 2015.

Looking ahead

"Tablet substitution of notebooks will start to dissipate from this year onwards as consumers and businesses align the right device with the right usage pattern. As they do this, we will see where dedicated devices (such as tablets), or hybrid devices (detachable or convertible devices), fit in the overall portfolio of devices," said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner.

The device market is expected to grow even further in 2015 to 2.6 billion. Most of this increase will be due to mobile phones, tablets, and ultramobiles, with traditional PC shipments declining slightly.