A new report from NPD DisplaySearch predicts that tablet shipments will exceed notebook PC shipments this year.

NPD expects more than 240 million tablets to ship worldwide in 2013, while only 207 million notebook PCs are projected to ship. The figures are taken from NPD’s “Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report.”

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Worldwide Notebook PC and Tablet PC Shipment Share Forecast. Source: NPD DisplaySearch

In a press release accompanying the report, NPD noted that “shifting market dynamics” are making a greater variety of devices available. In previous years, Apple has dominated tablet shipments, and while it remains a major player, entries from other companies will be more a part of the mix in the future. Overall growth in 2013 is projected to be 64 percent year over year.

One large factor in the increase in variety is the availability of different screen sizes. NPD’s projection shows the market share of Apple’s 9.7-inch iPad shrink in 2013, but this decrease is offset by the emergence of Apple’s 7.9-inch iPad mini. As a whole, tablets with 7- to 8-inch screens are projected to make up 45 percent of the total tablet market. Screens larger than the iPad’s will make up nearly 30 percent of the total, dominated by the 10.1-inch screen size.

Regionally, North America will remain the largest tablet market, accounting for 35 percent of all shipments in 2013. China passed the Europe/Middle East/Africa (EMEA) region in 2012 to become the second largest market in 2012 and will have 27 percent of the market in 2013. In China and North America, tablet shipments already passed notebook PC shipments in 2012.

A previous report from the same source in July said that it would take until 2016 for worldwide tablet shipments to surpass notebook shipments, according to Apple Insider. Slowing notebook sales prompted NPD to revise its estimate for this quarter.

Tags: ipad market share, ipad mini market share, notebook shipments, npd displaysearch, tablet market share, tablet shipments, tablets vs notebooks