Tag Archives: Privacy

Music – solid market research from MetaFacts Technology User Profile

Extensive information about digital music and which people do and don’t use it is available in TUP – Technology User Profile.

Victor Hugo said many years ago: “Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent.” Technology marketers and researchers know how important music is to so many people.

As fickle music-listening consumers continue to change their tastes and preferences, music has been instrumental in encouraging them to try many different types of technology. In particular, music has been the hit to draw consumers through adoption of some products and services, only to abandon those for newer disruptive offerings. The changes are far from over.

Below are a few examples of questions addressed in TUP related to digital music. The full TUP service enables drilling down beyond the answers to these questions to identify which other technologies and services are disruptive and to profile which market segments are and aren’t adopting. TUP is much more than a one-dimensional market view or opinion piece.

  • Entertainment primacy – what is the center of the user’s home entertainment world? Is it one device or many? Which devices and services, and among which segments?
  • Which segments are the most music-intensive? What is the overlap of music-centered products and services by segment?
  • Which segments are keeping their files, calendars, or other information synchronized or backed up online?
  • iPhone users – who are they really? How do they compare with Android and Blackberry users? What types and combinations of consumer electronics are homes using?
  • Age-related market adoption – which products and services are age-skewed? Which are skewed toward older rather than younger users?
  • Tech adoption cycles may not be as fast as the tech-focused think. How many and which users still use older tech products?
  • Primacy – what is the center of the user’s world? Their home PC, work PC, mobile phone? Is it one device or many?
  • Most-mobile customers – where do they go and what do they do?
  • Do PC users behave differently as they gain more experience? Are Newbies or Vets mostly focusing on certain activities versus a broad mixture?
  • How are smartphones challenging or complementing mobile PCs? Which market segments are coalescing around which platforms?
  • How much have PC users integrated PCs into their personal lives?
  • What do most people do with their mobile phone as compared to their PC? Which user segments align with which platforms?
  • Which smartphone OS is leading, and with which market segments?
  • What about the anti-social – those that aren’t in an online social network? Who are they? In what other ways are they actively communicating and having fun? How does their spending profile compare?
  • How many seniors are online? How is their behavior different than younger online users?
  • How PC/Online & Mobile Phone activities compare? How is this different for Tablets or eBook Readers? Which segments use which device for the most activities?
  • Are Apple’s retail shoppers already the Apple-faithful or is Apple drawing in the unconverted? Who are these shoppers?
  • What makes a smartphone a smartphone in the consumer’s eyes? How does usage compare to basic mobile phones? What are the user segments and usage profiles?
  • Who are the true early adopters and laggards? How does this vary by actual usage of specific products and technologies?
  • What is the status of mobile phone transition, from basic feature phones to smartphones and non-users?
  • How are users communicating, given all their communication options?
  • Who spends the most hours online?
  • Are PC users primarily accessing the Internet at home, in the workplace, using friends or neighbor’s computers, or in public places such as libraries or cybercafés? Which users use other’s PCs and which have many to choose from? Are smartphones or netbooks changing this?
  • Which combination of tech devices is the most popular today? How large is each segment? Who are in each segment? Which direction are they headed with their buying plans?
  • What do users sync or “store” in the cloud? How do users share images – social networking sites or photo-specific sites? Which users are the most active?
  • Who are the biggest tech spenders? Which segments spend the most and least for devices? How does spending for tech services differ?
  • What other activities are just outside the box for gamers? Online dating? Social Networking? Music? Movies? Entertainment in general?
  • Multitasking – who’s using many devices for many activities, versus few devices for many activities? How do user segments vary by quadrant?

If solid answers to any of these questions would help your work in creating the future, please contact MetaFacts.

MetaFacts, Inc. helps technology marketers find and measure their best and future customers.

Current subscribers of the Technology User Profile may obtain this information directly from MetaFacts, as well as additional customized drilling down into the full dataset.

For more information on the results delivered in TUP and about how to subscribe, please contact MetaFacts.

The above questions are answered with the TUP 2012 edition, and most are also answered in the TUP 2011 edition for ready trend comparison.

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Filed under Consumer research, Market Research, MetaFAQs, Mobile Phones, Technology, TUP 2011, TUP 2012

Early Independent Research on Google+ Users

Google+ Adoption – preliminary results from MetaFacts

Early Independent Research on Google+ Users

By Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts

The earliest adopters of Google+ are a unique slice of highly-active socially-networked users.

Early results are showing a good-news/bad-news combination for Google+:

  • Bad news: Early Google+ users are above average among social networkers who have recently unfriended someone, removed content, and adjusted their privacy settings. They are well below average in friending someone, not a very bullish sign.
  • Good news: Early Google+ users are also above average among social networkers in clicking ads, RSVP’ing events, playing games, sharing photos, and watching videos

Unlike the launch of Google Buzz, which brought privacy concerns to the fore, Google+, even privacy-adjusters to be trying out Google+, at least so far.

Evidently, Google+ controlled its “field trial” launch, inviting and allowing in a carefully selected audience. Over half are highly experienced tech users, with 16 or more years under their belt since they used their first PC, and 12 or more years using a mobile phone (smartphone or basic feature phone).

In the coming year, it’s unlikely to see an either/or scenario between Google+, Facebook, and Twitter. Instead, the most-active social networkers will simply expand their experience, influence, and content across an ever-wider network. The privacy-conscious and ad-averse are likely to remain in the shadows or with minimal involvement. Up for grabs is the largest middle segment, and this group is most likely to wait and watch for a simple and safe experience which piques their interest. This will come in the form of competitive apps on Facebook, extensions to Twitter, or further innovation from Google.

Background and Methodology

Google+ came live shortly before the fielding of the 29th year of the MetaFacts Technology Survey, so we expanded the comprehensive user survey to include Google+ along with other social networks.

The Technology User Profile survey is independently conducted by MetaFacts. The syndicated research original service provides solid sizing and segmentation information about technology use, uniquely allowing for deep dives into use of competitive and substitute products as well as interactive segmentation and profiling.

Based on surveys with thousands of representative respondents reached by telephone and online, the MetaFacts Technology User Profile Service survey the entire range of information technology users. The full market is surveyed, from those with the richest collection of products such as Smartphones to Tablets and Netbooks, to those who don’t even use a mobile phone or PC.

Soon we will be releasing key takeways about the earliest adopters for the new service. Watch this site – technologyuser.com – for brief, complimentary updates. For full details, a special Google+ Flash Report will also be available at a special rate. Send a request to be notified of availability. Subscribers to the 2011 Technology User Profile services will receive updates directly.

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Filed under Consumer research, Households, Market Research, Market Segmentation, Statistics, Technology, TUPdate

Are Rental PCs a Clue to the Next Big Thing in Technology?

Rent to Own-Storefront look familiar?

A MetaFacts TUPdate by Dan Ness, Principal Analyst

Consumers continue to shape the future of technology with their pocketbooks, whether by outright purchase or payment plans. PC renting is not currently widespread among most U.S. consumers, with only 1% of American online adults using a rented home PC. If considered much at all by the digerati, it is considered passé or fringe.

However, looking ahead, consumer usage patterns are trending towards the pay-as-you-go or the ad-supported model, and with a new definition of PCs and devices as the preferred platform(s): whether called Smartphone, Laptop, Tablet, Netbook, Mobile, or otherwise.

Today’s PC rental business might be called opportunistic, socially beneficial, or predatory, depending on your perspective. Americans renting PCs skew towards younger adults – particularly those PC Newbies who have used a PC less than a quarter of their life – as well as skewing towards adults not employed full-time. Also, evidently, PC renting is biased towards people of color: with rental rates higher among adults who identify with a racial/ethnic group other than White/Non-Hispanic.

Interestingly, these same segments are stronger than average in their use of Smartphones or Basic Mobile Phones as their primary or only browsing, email, and Twitter platforms, as well as the broadening use of prepaid cellular plans. This signals that these consumer segments are likely the earliest adopters of new financial models – not the mythical early adopters stereotypically portrayed as affluent, highly-educated youngsters.

Recently, attention on the rental PC business has increased due to the controversial practices of some rental retailers. The major furniture rental chain Aaron’s was named in a federal lawsuit. Some rental companies, allegedly including some Aaron’s outlets or franchisees, have protected their equipment through the use of remotely activated webcams or tracking software, to the consternation of unwitting renters. Privacy and security issues are looming as important factors following large breaches spanning credit cards, health records, Sony PlayStations, passwords and WikiLeaks documents, only to name a few.

The pay-as-you-go approach has done well for the cable TV and wireless phone businesses, if not for PC manufacturers or PDA makers. Wireless carrier subsidies are increasingly driving the decisions of consumer technology manufacturers, a factor arguably contributing to Palm being driven from their business model prior to being acquired by Hewlett Packard.

In addition to this pay-now/pay-later balance, consumers also position platforms along the BOB-Integrated spectrum. The BOB – Best Of Breed – end of the spectrum features products which do one or few functions very well. One example is a standalone GPS device which gives directions extremely well. The other end of the spectrum: Integrated or Swiss Army Knife – features broadly functional devices which do many things adequately. An example is a Smartphone navigation app, which may not have a full function set or may be compromised due to simultaneous use for incoming messages and music or as a timepiece. Most interestingly, consumers find ways to adapt their behavior in ways that are out of synch with the intentions of the product designers, in some cases using on a fraction of a product’s capability while at other times finding new uses for products beyond their expected design.

Looking ahead, MetaFacts expects continued turmoil and changes as each segment of consumers decide their own favorite device or platform striking a balance of BOB vs. integrated, with choices being affected in part by heightened security and privacy concerns and in part by the underlying payment model.

Source

The results in this TUPdate are drawn from the MetaFacts Technology User Profile Survey. In our most recent wave of Technology User Profile, we surveyed American adults about their use of mobile phones, technology attitudes, and many other behavioral and socioeconomic factors. Current TUP subscribers can access and drill down more deeply into this phenomenon using TUP Interactive Access or with their datasets.

We started this analysis by first looking at the answers from 8,175 U.S. respondents in the Technology User Profile service and then drilled down further into their profiles to get a more complete picture.

Contact MetaFacts to access the MetaFacts Technology User Profile Overview Edition report, which covers the broader range of key trends. View findings in 25 pages of executive summary analysis, 200+ pages of charts and graphs, all supported by 95+ pages of detailed tables. The complete, 300+ page report is delivered to you electronically.

These editions are for the U.S. based on the 2010 wave of Technology User Profile gathered among a scrupulously selected set of representative respondents, surveyed both online and offline.

To see other research coverage of Internet products and activities  – from smartphones to feature phones, desktops to notebooks, social networking, demographics, and attitudes – see the many other questions TUP answers on www.technologyuser.com. Tech market research professionals who want a solid resource they can use immediately after industry events such as mergers, or even use prior to anticipated events, can license direct access to TUP.

About TUPdates

MetaFacts releases ongoing research on the market shifts and profiles for Smartphones, Netbooks, Mobile PCs, Workplace PCs, Home PCs, Web Creators, Broadband, and many other technology industry trends and facts. These TUPdates are short analytical articles in a series of specific topics utilizing the Technology User Profile Annual Edition study, which reveals the changing patterns of technology adoption around the world. Interested technology professionals can sign up at https://technologyuser.com/contact/ for complimentary TUPdates – periodic snapshots of technology markets.

About MetaFacts

MetaFacts helps technology marketers find and measure their best and future customers. MetaFacts’ Technology User Profile (TUP) survey is the longest-running, large-scale comprehensive study of its kind, conducted continuously since 1983, the year before Apple released the Apple Macintosh. The detailed results are a primary market sizing and segmentation resource for leading companies providing consumer-oriented technology products and services, such as PCs, printers, software applications, peripherals, consumer electronics, mobile computing, and related services and products. TUP analyzes key trends and the data-rich source can be dived into more deeply for custom analysis. For more information about the syndicated research service, analysis tools, publications and datasets, contact MetaFacts at 1-760-635-4300.

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Filed under Consumer research, Households, Market Research, Market Segmentation, Technology User Overview Report, Trends, TUP 2010, TUPdate

Privacy is on the mind of savvy early adopters as they resist location sharing – A MetaFacts TUPdate

A MetaFacts TUPdate by Dan Ness, Principal Analyst

Are early adopters starting to act like laggards? It may seem a paradox that the most forward-thinking consumers – the first to adopt smartphones – would also be the ones more strongly avoiding unique smartphone features.

The true answer is that consumers are more complex and intelligent than simplistic adoption curve analysis suggests. In choosing mobile phones, they are navigating between the sirens and rocks of enticing deals, identity theft, entertainment, carrier signal strength (or weakness), desire for social connections, misinformation, privacy, trust, and much more.

When it comes to data security & privacy, most Smartphone users express concern and corresponding action. A higher share of Smartphone than Basic Mobile Phone users take steps to protect their security and privacy, including disabling some features.

Privacy Concerns for Smartphones and Basic Mobile Phones

Location services have been integral to Smartphones and Feature Phones for years and most handsets give subscribers the option to minimize tracking. However, recent widely publicized breaches have brought this closer to the forefront of consumer’s buying behavior.

Age and gender alone do not truly define the privacy-aware from others; correcting for age shows that tech experience matters. Most Smartphone users today have more tech experience than average users, so are savvy about settings and controls and have privacy and security concerns for PCs which are inherited by their Smartphones.

App developers which assume settings will be on by default, such as location identification, will encounter market resistance. Privacy and Security are issues which can suddenly inflame public sentiment. Even though customers may have read agreements and adjusted their privacy & security settings, many have an expectation of being private and secure.

Consumers vote with their responses, as well as their fingers and wallets. Building (or rebuilding) trust is a widespread issue, and certainly not only in the U.S. Each participant in the ecosystem of handling personally identifiable information has their part to play if location-based services and mobile payments are to flourish and last longer than fads. MetaFacts expects that privacy and security will continue to stay a concern among many consumers with reported breaches beyond those specifically on Smartphones – from identify theft to Wikileaks reports.

Source

The results in this TUPdate are drawn from the MetaFacts Technology User Profile Survey. In our most recent wave of Technology User Profile, we surveyed American adults about their use of mobile phones, technology attitudes, and many other behavioral and socioeconomic factors. Current TUP subscribers can access and drill down more deeply into this phenomenon using TUP Interactive Access or with their datasets.

We started this analysis by first looking at the answers from 8,175 U.S. respondents in the Technology User Profile service and then drilled down further into their profiles to get a more complete picture.

Contact MetaFacts to access the MetaFacts Technology User Profile Overview Edition report, which covers the broader range of key trends. View findings in 25 pages of executive summary analysis, 200+ pages of charts and graphs, all supported by 95+ pages of detailed tables. The complete, 300+ page report is delivered to you electronically.

These editions are for the U.S. based on the 2010 wave of Technology User Profile gathered among a scrupulously selected set of representative respondents, surveyed both online and offline.

To see other research coverage of Internet products and activities – from smartphones to feature phones, desktops to notebooks, social networking, demographics, and attitudes – see the many other questions TUP answers on www.technologyuser.com. Tech market research professionals who want a solid resource they can use immediately after industry events such as mergers, or even use prior to anticipated events, can license direct access to TUP.

About TUPdates

MetaFacts releases ongoing research on the market shifts and profiles for Smartphones, Netbooks, Mobile PCs, Workplace PCs, Home PCs, Web Creators, Broadband, and many other technology industry trends and facts. These TUPdates are short analytical articles in a series of specific topics utilizing the Technology User Profile Annual Edition study, which reveals the changing patterns of technology adoption around the world. Interested technology professionals can sign up at https://technologyuser.com/contact/ for complimentary TUPdates – periodic snapshots of technology markets.

About MetaFacts

MetaFacts helps technology marketers find and measure their best and future customers. MetaFacts’ Technology User Profile (TUP) survey is the longest-running, large-scale comprehensive study of its kind, conducted continuously since 1983, the year before Apple released the Apple Macintosh. The detailed results are a primary market sizing and segmentation resource for leading companies providing consumer-oriented technology products and services, such as PCs, printers, software applications, peripherals, consumer electronics, mobile computing, and related services and products. TUP analyzes key trends and the data-rich source can be dived into more deeply for custom analysis. For more information about the syndicated research service, analysis tools, publications and datasets, contact MetaFacts at 1-760-635-4300.

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Filed under Consumer research, Market Research, Mobile Phones, Technology User Overview Report, TUP 2010, TUPdate

Amazon Cloud Drive may rain on Apple while lightening load for consumers

Early Adopter

Today, Amazon announced the Amazon Cloud Drive and Amazon Cloud Player for Web. This game-changing move will likely bring a boost to the decades-old online file storage services. It may even have the effect of reining in music listeners who may have strayed, since the player will evidently only support purchased songs.

We took a quick look into the MetaFacts Technology User Profile research and discovered several challenges ahead for Amazon and others planning to follow suit, as well as some elements that show Amazon is in the right place at the right time with the right offering.

First of all, more Amazon shoppers alread use online cloud storage than non-shoppers. This means these consumers may be predisposed to cloud-based storage which is an advantage for Amazon. However, if the consumers currently using cloud storage are focused more on file backup and file/folder synchronization services, these don’t appear to be in Amazon’s initial offering.

Also, more Amazon shoppers use a portable MP3 player than online onsumers who don’t regularly shop on Amazon. While Apple’s iPod has the highest share among MP3 players, it’s share isn’t markedly different among Amazon’s shoppers than non-shoppers

In fact, Amazon’s shoppers are already active music-listeners, being well above average in music downloading and listening to streaming audio.

They are also more active using social networks, as well as sharing photos and videos through networks like Facebook, or through sites like HP Snapfish.

Meanwhile, among users of cloud storage services, Apple’s footprint is substantially higher than among non-cloud users. Further, users of cloud storage skew younger than Amazon’s current clientele. This could have the effect of drawing in younger customers to Amazon’s customer base, or may be ignored by Amazon’s relatively older and less cloud-savvy customers.

Cloud storage users have a higher share of Smartphone use than non-users, with higher shares for use of RIM Blackberry, Windows Phone, Apple iPhones and Android Smartphones.

Because most consumers may not know that Amazon has supported back-end cloud storage for many other technology firms, consumers are likely to raise concerns about Amazon’s experience and security capabilities.

Interested tech marketers and researchers may contact MetaFacts for licensing information.

Source

The results in this TUPdate are drawn from the MetaFacts Technology User Profile Survey. Results specific to this topic can be obtained through customized report. Also, you may obtain the related MetaFacts Technology User Profile Overview Edition Report, which covers the broader range of key trends, by contacting MetaFacts. View findings in 25 pages of executive summary analysis, 200+ pages of charts and graphs, all supported by 95+ pages of detailed tables. The complete, 300+ page report is delivered to you electronically. This edition is for the U.S. based on the 2010 wave of Technology User Profile gathered among a scrupulously selected set of representative respondents, surveyed both online and offline.

To see other research coverage of Internet products and activities – from smartphones to feature phones, desktops to notebooks, social networking, demographics, and attitudes – see the many other questions TUP answers on www.technologyuser.com. Tech market research professionals who want a solid resource they can use immediately after industry events such as mergers, or even use prior to anticipated events, can license direct access to TUP.

About TUPdates

MetaFacts releases ongoing research on the market shifts and profiles for Smartphones, Netbooks, Mobile PCs, Workplace PCs, Home PCs, Web Creators, Broadband, and many other technology industry trends and facts. These TUPdates are short analytical articles in a series of specific topics utilizing the Technology User Profile Annual Edition study, which reveals the changing patterns of technology adoption around the world. Interested technology professionals can sign up at https://technologyuser.com/contact/ for complimentary TUPdates – periodic snapshots of technology markets.

About MetaFacts

MetaFacts, Inc. is a market research firm focusing exclusively on the technology industries. MetaFacts’ Technology User Profile (TUP) survey is the longest-running, large-scale comprehensive study of its kind, conducted continuously since 1983, the year before Apple released the Apple Macintosh. The detailed results are a primary market sizing and segmentation resource for leading companies providing consumer-oriented technology products and services, such as PCs, printers, software applications, peripherals, consumer electronics, mobile computing, and related services and products. TUP analyzes key trends and the data-rich source can be dived into more deeply for custom analysis. For more information about the syndicated research service, analysis tools, publications and datasets, contact MetaFacts at 1-760-635-4300.

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Filed under Consumer research, Market Research, TUP 2010, TUPdate