Study: 34 percent of American adults own a tablet

It may seem like there are a lot of tablets in the hands of consumers, but the exact numbers are still a little surprising. Where a few years ago only the tech savvy owned a tablet, now it isn't surprising to see anyone with the mobile device.

According to a recent study by Pew Internet Center, 34 percent of American adults ages 18 and over currently own a tablet device. That is nearly double the number (18 percent) that owned one a year ago and up from 3 percent when the first study was conducted in May 2010.

If you think the numbers are being pushed by younger consumers, you'd be mistaken. The 18-24 demographic is fourth on the list with 33 percent of consumers owning a tablet. In front of them is the 25-34 demo (37 percent), 45-54 demo (38 percent) and standing on top is the 35-44 demographic (49 percent).

This increased adoption means more companies can expect to see iPads showing up in the office as part of a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy. It also means businesses considering an iPad deployment to improve communication and streamline business operations should not be afraid to do so under the misguided apprehension that older employees will be reluctant to use the devices.

Companies can make this move easier by partnering with an IT consulting firm that specializes in incorporating mobile devices into a  business strategy. It takes more than just having tablets for them to be a successful company tool.