K-12 Children and Technology Spending

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst

Who can quantify the pride or commitment of a parent? On social networks, I often see a parent sharing their happiness about their child reaching an educational milestone.A proud father

One measure of parental pride, dedication, or support could include the investment they make in tools to help their children grow and learn. Technology spending among adults with children continues to increase, and especially so among those with younger school-age children.

As released in our most recent wave of Technology User Profile – TUP 2017 US – our research shows that spending on home technology devices and services has increased both in volume and breadth. The number of Connected Adults with school-age children has grown, and so has their average tech spending. In TUP 2015, we found that 72.5 million Connected Adults were in households with Children. That grew to 81.2 million, as ascertained in our TUP 2017 wave.k12 homes tech spending trends TUP 2017-15 171130_1200

The average (mean) annual amount spent on technology devices and services is strikingly stronger for households with children than for those without children. The average annual tech spend increased from $7.4k to nearly $11k within only the last two years – from the TUP 2015 to TUP 2017 survey. During this same time, homes without children increased their tech spending, although the growth has not been as substantial. Among adults with no children, average spending rose from $5.9k to $6.7k over those three study years.

Drilling down into the TUP data just a little deeper, I noticed a more interesting difference among households with children in their tech spending. Homes with younger school-age children (age 6-11) are spending the most on home technology devices and services. Meanwhile, households with either the oldest or the youngest children have increased spending, although not by as many dollars.k12 homes tech spending trends by age segment TUP 2017-15 171130_1215

While not all home technology is being bought solely for the use of kids, there’s a strong association. For example, more than one-in five (22%) adults with children in their household specifically print items for children/teen education.

Also, Connected Adults with school-age children (6-17) are 20% or more likely than the average to be using a Home All-in-One PC, Apple Home Mac, or Home Tablet.

Looking ahead

Parents have been some of the biggest tech spenders for decades, and this recent increase in investment bodes well for the tech market as well as for the next wave of children. Each successive generation has become more comfortable with and reliant on technology devices and services. I expect this momentum to continue as each new generation of new parents uses what they know to support their children’s education and future.

Source

The information in this TUPdate is based on the three most recent waves of Technology User Profile (TUP) – the TUP 2015, 2016, and 2017 waves into the US. Current TUP subscribers can tap into these and additional similar results about adults with children in the UK, Germany, China, and India. For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

Every Step You Take – Smartphone Step-Trackers (TUPdate)

Every Step You Take – Smartphone Step-Trackers – a TUPdate by Dan Ness, March 24, 2017

Baby steps count, as long as they’re in the right direction.  Digital health promises positive outcomes for a wide range of people. However, like gym memberships and home treadmills, they don’t do much unless people use them. A first step for many is to use what’s handy. Most Smartphones can track a user’s steps, and many are being used for that purpose, although use isn’t as widespread as Fitness Trackers or Smartwatches.

Phone Home or Walk Home?

Using one’s Smartphone to track steps is a regular activity for 25 million, or 1 in 9, US adults. There are other ways to track one’s health. Electronics activity trackers, such as the FitBit, are being actively used by 39.6 million, or 18% of US adults.
Continue reading “Every Step You Take – Smartphone Step-Trackers (TUPdate)”

Inexorable Device Trends – Beyond the Niche, Fad, and Fizzle

Inexorable Device Trends – Beyond the Niche, Fad, and Fizzle – a TUPdate by Dan Ness, March 10, 2017

It can be exciting to see the hockey-stick charts, with everything up and to the right. It’s important to put the numbers into context, though, through a more grounded analysis of the active installed base. Yes, Apple’s long-climb into broader use of their triumvirate is substantial, Smartphones are quickly replacing basic cell phones, and PCs and Printers persist. Their market size confirms their importance.

We humans are wired to notice change. Our very eyes send more information about motion than background. While life-saving should tigers head our way, this capability can be our undoing if we miss gradual changes, like the slithering snake in the grass creeping towards us. Watching an installed base of technology has some parallels. For some, it can seem as if nothing is really changing even while important shifts are taking place.

For over 35 years, I have tracked technology usage trends and profiles, all calibrated by watching customers through surveys such as our Metafacts Technology User Profile. Among other truisms, I’ve seen that true technology trends aren’t sudden. Solid trends are the summation of the habits, preferences, and activities of millions of technology users. They’re inescapable, inexorable, and years in the making. Trends become truly important when they’ve spread beyond being a niche, fad, or fizzle, and reached beyond those first few early adopters.

In this analysis, I’m diving into several key broad dominant trends in technology device usage across American adults. In separate analyses, I’ll drill deeper into the next level of TUP data, revealing which market segments are making the most decisive changes. Continue reading “Inexorable Device Trends – Beyond the Niche, Fad, and Fizzle”