Has the iPad killed PC growth?

The iPad can do a lot of what we traditionally use our computers for, so it stands to reason that some folks would see their tablet as a suitable stand-in for a new PC. According to sales data from Gartner, Apple's tablet may have utterly crushed the growth of PC shipments worldwide. The data -- which is presented in graph form, courtesy of Statista -- appears to indicate that consumers are going with tablets rather than full-fledged computers, as the PC market is actually shrinking.

However, there's likely a lot more to this than simply the release of Apple's now iconic tablet. Yes, the iPad has certainly replaced a few PCs out there, but devices like smartphones and other, non-iPad tablets have done so, too. Overall, portable devices are more capable now than ever before, and for individuals who only used their home computers for email or web browsing, something as simple as a smartphone could get the job done.

I'm sure Apple would love to be able to claim that its tablet has been successful enough to singlehandedly damage sales of an entire category of devices, but in truth this shift is almost certainly a much larger one toward mobile gadgets in general.