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updated 11/7/2012 9:20:17 AM ET 2012-11-07T14:20:17

In just seven months, the iPad has overtaken the Blu-ray player and the gaming console to become the most popular device for streaming movies and TV.

And that's no small feat considering the iPad has been around for about half the time of other streaming media devices.

ChangeWave Research asked 1,115 North Americans what devices they use to stream video. (Respondents could choose more than one device.) Thirty-two percent of people use an iPad, a gain of 7 percentage points since ChangeWave conducted its first study in February of this year, and just enough to knock  Blu-ray players  down to second place.

The figures also show iPhones have surged in popularity as a device of choice for streaming video, and now rank third. Like Blu-ray players, video game console use dropped just enough to take them down a notch to fourth. Internet TVs, Apple TV and Roku (the latter two are both set-top boxes that connect to a TV) each accounted for less than 20 percent of viewers.

In short,  iPads and iPhones  are the only two devices used by at least a quarter of the respondents.

What does it all mean for the holiday shopping period ahead? Look for deep discounts on Blu-ray players, along with value bundles on game consoles. But if you really want to make a splash on Christmas morning, skip the big-screen TV and reach for a tablet.

© 2012 TechNewsDaily

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