Survey: most tablet shopping IT buyers will go with iPad

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Apple’s iPad has the almost completely undivided attention of corporate IT departments right now. It’s far from the only tablet out there, yet according to a ChangeWave Research survey of 1,604 businesses, IT buyers are interested in little else. In February, of the 22 percent of businesses planning to purchase tablets, 84 percent of those IT folks said they planned to buy iPads for employees sometime in the next quarter.

That number of IT buyers making plans to order iPads has gone up 7 percent in just three months. Here’s a graph showing the change in demand among those surveyed by ChangeWave over the past 15 months:

It’s possible that 84 percent number is even higher now, considering that this survey was conducted weeks before Apple introduced the new iPad with the Retina display and 4G networking option, as well as before it dropped the entry-level price to $399 for the iPad 2.

Forrester informed us in January that IT departments planned to spend $10 billion on iPads this year, so ChangeWave’s latest data isn’t particularly shocking. And as we have chronicled here at GigaOM, with the kind of stuff you can do with an iPad at work these days — data visualization and report publishing, quickly assessing the stock marketusing it as a flight manual, or just making meetings more bearable — it seems most IT overlords don’t have to be convinced that employees are just going to be playing Angry Birds all day.

The data also confirms that while media tablets like those from Amazon and Barnes & Noble are attracting interest from consumers, for work-related purposes, the iPad still has no true competition.

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