Tablet adoption has doubled over the past year, according to the Pew Internet Life survey of adults in April and May.
Unlike smartphones, most popular with younger adults ages 18-34, the highest rates of tablet ownership was found among adults in their late 30s and early 40s.
Some 49 percent of those in the 35-44 own a tablet computer, more than any other age group. Among those 65 or older, the figure was just 18 percent.
The survey found half of adults with at least a college degree owned a tablet, significantly more than those at any other education level.
And 56 percent of adults living in households making at least $75,000 per year said they have a tablet computer, compared with 20 percent of those making less than $30,000 per year.
Research firm IDC said in a recent report that tablet sales globally are expected to grow 58.7 percent in 2013 to 229.3 million units.
This would bring tablet shipments above those of portable PCs this year. And IDC said it expects tablet shipments to outpace the entire PC market by 2015.