According to click data analyzed by URL shortening and analytics service bit.ly, the iPad ultimately differs from other platforms in the way it’s used throughout the day. The discovery is unsurprising as Apple has been heavily touting the iPad as a new category of device aimed at doing things better than regular smartphones and computers (which Apple also happens to sell), but it’s interesting to see these usage patterns confirmed and visualized by a service that’s undoubtedly the most used when it comes to shortening and sharing links on the web.
Bit.ly analyzed links clicked from Linux, Windows and OS X machines, as well as BlackBerry, iOS and Android phones, and the iPad. Then, they compared the click data against the time of the day, the day of the week and the country to build a graph that summarizes usage patterns for the most common devices that access bit.ly links every day. The results for computers and smartphones don’t surprise: people start using PCs and smartphones as they wake up, usage slightly increases through the workday, and slows down as the evening approaches and users are far more likely to consume other content. That kind of content consumed in the late hours of the day happens to be represented by the iPad which, unlike other platforms, sees a slower approach throughout the day but a higher peak in the evening as people come back from work. In weekend days, iPad usage in the morning and afternoon is slightly higher than the rest of the week.
The iPad’s usage pattern is drastically different. Usage dips after breakfast, remains low during traditional working hours and does not peak until much later in the evening. During the weekends iPad usage between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. is higher than it is during the week at those same hours. No other device sees a heavy increase of use during the weekends, showing that the iPad is used as an entertainment device and differs from both smartphones and browsers.
Bit.ly also notes how Facebook and YouTube are still the most accessed websites from users, and that in spite of “official” availability in 39 countries, they registered iPad data from 203 countries. The iPad is different from other devices, and it’s being used by consumers in new different ways that are causing these unprecedented usage patterns. For instance, people are more likely to come back from work and relax on the couch with an iPad reading news or a book, rather than sitting at their desk using a PC again. Or, they might want to enjoy a game with their kids, or read a book to them before they go to sleep. Check out the full report at ReadWriteWeb for the complete stats.