How do you think iPad owners use those fully-functional, take-anywhere devices? The answer might not only surprise you, but also convince you that if you’re not putting key resources into developing iPad-friendly content, especially apps, you’re making a serious business mistake.The biggest use for the iPad, according to results of a usage survey released this week by Business Insider: searching the Web, which takes 37.5% of users’ time on the device. This is about equal to the amount of time spent surfing using a personal computer, indicating that iPads are increasingly taking the place of a regular computer. Nearly 40% of iPad users say the device is their primary computer and 41% of users are spending 2-5 hours per day with the iPad.When I contacted Business Insider reporter Jay Yarrow, who worked on the survey and reporting the results, to get more analysis on his findings, he summed up the trend this way: “I would say that it looks like Apple is going to own this market for at least the next year, and possibly the year after that. Android tablets are still having the kinks worked out of them. And Google hasn’t really provided a strong reason for why someone should buy its tablet over an iPad.”
What does that mean for a content publisher? Two things come to mind to us here at Subscription Site Insider:1. Your website better be iPad friendly. How does it render? Are tasks just as easy to accomplish as they would be on a PC?2. If you don’t own an iPad yourself, someone in your office should be regularly testing out your offerings using the iPad. You want to understand your customer experience and more and more of them are going to be using iPads.Another key take away for content producers: You must be in the app space. According to the survey, 19% of users say their primary use for the iPad is to use apps other than games. 29% have downloaded over 50 apps, and users across the board are paying $10 to $20 for each one. That indicates it is okay to charge for your apps; users are coming to expect it.There are several other interesting takeaways from the survey including insight for e-book publishers and why app developers need to keep customers engaged. Visit Business Insider for the full results.