While the tablet may have seemed like a niche luxury item that acted as a fancy addition to your laptop or desktop, this has rapidly changed. More and more people are picking up tablets instead of PCs, with many people choosing to do all of their home computing from the comfort of a tablet’s large touchscreen. A new forecast from IDC is reporting that tablet shipments are even expected to surpass portable PC shipments by the end of 2013, and are expected to surpass all PC shipments, which includes laptops and desktops, by 2015.

IDC states that tablet shipments will grow “58.7% year-over-year in 2013 reaching 229.3 million units, up from 144.5 million units last year.” This is in contrast to the PC market, which IDC reports will experience negative growth.

IDC reports that one of the supporting factors for this is the rapidly dropping price of tablets. Over the course of the last year, the average selling price for tablets has dropped 10.8% to just over $380 on average for every tablet sold. This is compared to the $635 average cost for PCs. IDC predicts tablets to continue dropping in price as sales continue to grow.

IDC also shows the incredibly increasing growth rate of smaller sized tablets. It reports that in 2011, tablets under 8″ accounted for 27% of the market while tablets between 8″ and 11″ accounted for 73%. Since then, those numbers have changed significantly, with IDC anticipating that by 2017, 57% of all tablets will be under 8″ and that just 37% will be between 8″ and 11″.

If these trends continue, the next generation of children might be lucky to even know what a PC is.

Image Credit: PC Advisor