Sales of tablets will overtake sales of traditional desktop and notebook PCs by 2015, according to a report.

BI Intelligence, the research arm of Business Insider, has issued data forecasting that the tablet industry will become a $100bn-plus market within the next three years, with 500 million units sold per annum by 2015.

This will make it larger than the PC market, which sells around 360 million units per year. As BI Intelligence points out, this falls in with the prediction that Steve Jobs made that PCs will become like 'trucks' and tablets like 'cars'.

"PCs will still be around, and they'll still be a big market, but they won't become the most common way people do their computing anymore," the report's authors say.

Growth in the tablet industry will be propelled by lower prices and better penetration into emerging markets, as well as the education and enterprise sectors, the report claims.

BI Intelligence predicts that Apple will begin to sell older versions of its market leading iPad at reduced prices, much like it did with the iPhone, which will give the market a boost.

Additionally, the success of the Kindle Fire in the US shows that there is demand for a low-cost tablet - a market that Google could muscle in on after its Motorola acquisition, BI Intelligence says.