Smartphones and tablets are the two cornerstones of the ongoing mobile revolution. PC usage has suffered as a result, particularly when consuming media and mobile devices are seemingly on an unstoppable rise.

But while the increasingly powerful smartphones are tearing up the sales charts, tablets are not far behind. In fact, a new survey from Ofcom reveals that tablets are fast becoming the mobile devices of choice for children and young adults in the United Kingdom.

These particular segments of users are shunning mobile phones and are more likely to spend time on a tablet. Compared to the 2012 study, when 49 percent of children aged 5 to 15 owned a handset, the corresponding figure for this year is 43 percent.

Impressively enough, instead of rising, the figure is going down.

What is not going down are screen sizes of newer smartphones. But children and young adults still prefer the tablets and the broad features they provide to phones. The research also shows that adoption of slates has gone up to 42 percent today, compared to 14 percent last year.

You can take a peek at the report here (PDF link), which further breaks things down into age groups.

But the fact that this is the first such drop since the survey began in 2005 clearly shows where user priorities lie these days.

Microsoft and other Windows tablet makers know full well that while the age of Windows tablets is just beginning, the potential is limitless. The frontier may be new but the social shift is plain evident.

Redmond fired off the first shots last year with Windows 8. Now it is up to the hardware and software creators to grow and expand the ecosystem.

This is, after all, the changing face of computing.

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