PARIS: The number of consumers hoping to buy a tablet has tripled in France during the last year, a new study shows.

Médiamétrie, the media research company, and GfK, the survey firm, interviewed people from 22,000 households, a panel reflecting the country's population as a whole.

As a result, they reported that a group representing 525,000 residences now plan to buy a slate device such as the iPad, a figure which has trebled during the last year.

Purchase intent was particularly high, on 40%, when the head of the household was in the 35–49 year old demographic.

Elsewhere, the analysis found that 73.2% of homes have at least one computer, an increase of 2.1 percentage points on an annual basis, and a lift of 10 percentage points versus three years ago.

Moreover, the internet penetration rate has reached 71.6%, an improvement on the total of 67.7% recorded during the third quarter of 2010.

People living in another 44% of households already owned a notebook, while netbooks also saw a rapid increase in uptake, and are currently present in 12.5%, or 3.4m, homes.

Overall, 31.4% of residences now possess at least two different types of computer, up from 28.7% last year, and a figure set to rise as gadgets like tablets gain in popularity.

As such, the trends towards mobility and portability could yield a generation of devices which are "complementary" to existing appliances, rather than serving as replacements, the study argued.

Data sourced from Médiamétrie; additional content by Warc staff