BERLIN: Over 2m tablets are likely to be sold in Germany in 2011, more than doubling figures from 2010, and exerting a profound influence on the rest of the PC sector.

BITKOM, the digital industry group, has predicted that 2.1m slates will be purchased this year, an expansion of 162% on an annual basis.

The organisation reported that the uptake for these appliances had increased more rapidly than anticipated, having previously pegged demand at 1.5m units.

In value terms, tablet sales will hit €1.1bn in 2011, a 141% lift year on year. However, the average price of these gadgets has declined by 8% compared with 2010.

Looking ahead, BITKOM forecast that 2.7m tablets would be sold in 2012, taking the category to a value of €1.3bn.

A separate survey by the same body found 13% of German shoppers planned to buy a tablet in the Christmas period, either for themselves or as a present.

Indeed, the rise of products such as the iPad also appears to be reshaping the PC market, as sales of netbooks are set to fall by 35%, to 900,000 units, in 2011.

Elsewhere, some 3m notebooks will be purchased by business users, an 8% increase, but retail sales may slide by 15% to 3.8m units.

Overall, 13.4m computers, including desktop PCs and smaller devices, are likely to be sold in 2011, largely flat measured against 2010. Value sales could fall by 1.2% to €6.7bn.

In all, tablets should thus take a 16% share of the PC market, behind desktops on 27% and notebooks on 50%. Netbooks posted just 7% on this metric.

"Tablet computers have conquered the mass market and are reaching an ever-broader user community," Dieter Kempf, the president of BITKOM, said. "The success of tablets has also lead to significant shifts in the PC market."

Data sourced from BITKOM; additional content by Warc staff