Tag Archives: Sociodemographics

Tech for some of us? Tech usage and age (TUPdate)

Tech for some of us? Tech usage and age – Dan Ness, November 10, 2016

I’ve been to county fairs where a carnival seer will guess your age and weight. If these diviners were steeped in tech awareness, might they be able to go further and guesstimate if the person uses a video doorbell, 3D printer, or VR headset? I doubt it. Not being psychic, we rely on directly asking people through scientific surveys.

Although age alone doesn’t tell everything about a technology user, analysis of the market by age reveals some striking differences in user’s technology activities, use cases, consumer electronics penetration, connected device usage, and tech purchase intentions.MetaFacts td1611-plans-youth-skewed-2016-11-10_09-23-41

Market penetration is steeply skewed towards younger adults for most consumer electronics products and services. Analyzing our survey results from TUP 2016, most consumer electronics products index higher among younger than older adults. (An index of 100 means that the product is being used as the same rate as the national average.) Products that index well above 200 (double the national rate) for age 25-39 are many, including OTT TV Boxes ASUS Cube, Google Nexus Player and Google/Android TV. To dispel the notion this age group is sedentary, golf swing analyzers also index high. Furthermore, this group is tech-feathering their nests with video doorbells and smart locks.MetaFacts td16-elder-skewed-2016-11-09_16-51-10

Older adults can claim dominance in other consumer electronics products and services. Subscription to Cable TV is stronger among older than younger adults. Many younger adults that watch TV do so using the Internet. Turntables that play vinyl albums (Record Players) index more strongly among older adults. This may in part reflect that older adults may still have vinyl collections to play, while younger adults can either play newer more-expensive albums or track down older LPs. The elder-skewed usage indexes are not as strongly defined as those for youth-skewed, reflecting moderate use of both of these products and services among younger adults.

I know from decades of consumer research that age is only one factor describing technology users. So, I drilled down further into TUP to adjust for educational attainment and employment status. By rank order, the list of age-skewed consumer electronics is nearly identical by age for employed and self-employed adults. This pattern is similar for those who are college educated.

A similar pattern emerges for Connected Devices. Certain products are being used by a higher share of younger than older adults.MetaFacts td1611-devices-youth-skewed-2016-11-10_09-25-15

Interestingly, the highest-ranked youth-skewed top devices weren’t personally paid for by younger adults, and instead were bought by their employers. These range from work e-Book Readers and Tablets to All-in-One PCs and yes, Basic cell phones. When younger adults buy tech with their own money, two more highly-favored devices are Game Consoles and Apple MacBooks. Furthermore, whether as a sign of mobility, resourcefulness or freeloading, younger adults index higher for use of a public/shared printer, such as might be in a cybercafé, library, or hotel business center. They also index higher for using three or more printers, regardless of ownership.

There’s an old adage that goes “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” This is likely uttered more often among older than younger adults. The active installed base for older adults skews higher for Home PCs running Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7. Personal basic feature phones also index higher by older adults.MetaFacts td1611-devices-elder-skewed-2016-11-10_09-24-29

Considering the near future through buyer sentiment, a similarly distinctive young/old pattern emerges. Gaming Desktops and Gaming Notebooks, those highly-configured clocked-up fun machines, are skewed more steeply than current usage indexes. Smaller and often more-stylish PCs in the Mini Desktop PC form factor rank strongest. One product which might surprise some is the Apple iPod Touch. It’s effectively a Wi-Fi iPhone, capable of running many iOS apps although without cellular coverage. Since younger adults index higher for Work Basic feature phones, perhaps this device is a stepping stone or companion. Other notable youth-skewing planned devices include wearables – Android SmartWatch, Apple Watch, or another Smart Watch.

Purchase intentions skewed toward older adults shows a different picture. From the long list of technology products we surveyed about, none show a measurably strong skew among older adults. The three products even near to being stronger for purchase intentions are the basic cell phone, a printer, and traditional notebook PC. As I mentioned earlier, younger adults have a higher likelihood to be using a work or public/shared printer than older adults, which may contribute to them not being as eager to buy one of their own. As to traditional notebooks, younger adults are also the ones more strongly considering convertible and 2-in-1 designs, while also many consider traditionals. The picture for basic cell phones is scattered due to their continued decline, so any remaining plans are less aligned by age than by socioeconomic situation.MetaFacts td1611-plans-youth-skewed-2016-11-10_09-23-41

There’s another dimension to age that bears inclusion – experience. Newbie users make different choices than technology veterans. I dove into our technology adoption data in TUP to compare purchase plans by the longevity of the user’s experience. While those who are in the newest-third of users of PCs, Mobile Phones, or Tablets are also generally younger, that’s not entirely the case. First-time use for a Tablet is not limited to young adults; plenty of 30-something and 40-somethings are continuing to join the ranks of active Tablet users. In fact, 59% of adults who have used a Tablet PC for 1 year or less are age 35 and higher.MetaFacts td1611-plans-by-more-experience-2016-11-10_10-40-10

As we analyzed the purchase plans of the most-seasoned technology users – those who are in the top-third with the most years having used a PC, Mobile Phone, or Tablet, we found that purchase intentions are focused on different products than among newbies. 3D Printers, 2-in-1 Laptops, and Fitness trackers index much higher among the tech-experienced.

Gaming Notebooks, Gaming Desktops, and Mini Desktop PCs rank strongly among tech newbies. Some of this correlates strongly with lower age, as mentioned earlier. However, Tower Desktop PCs also rank strongly. Cloud Home Monitoring/Security solutions stand out as an up-and-coming area which are holding the interest of tech newbies, and less so among the tech-experienced.MetaFacts td1611-plans-by-less-experience-2016-11-10_10-40-10

Age is a good start in understanding technology users. But, like the skill of a carnival psychic, only goes so far.

About this TUPdate

This TUPdate includes a complimentary brief summary of recent MetaFacts TUP (Technology User Profile) research results. These results are based on the most-recent results of the MetaFacts Technology User Profile 2016 survey, its 34th wave, with 7,334 respondents (US). Trend information is based on prior waves. For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

Resources

Current TUP subscribers can tap into any of the following TUP information used for this analysis or for even deeper analysis.

The TUP 2016 User Profile Chapter details age, as well as life stage, age cohort, employer size, and other key analysis points. The TUP 2016 Technology Adoption Chapter drills down into experience to profile Early Adopters, the Early and Late Majority, and Laggards.

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Filed under 3D Printers, Basic cell phones, Behaviors and Activities, Convertibles, Demographics & Econographics, Desktops, Devices, e-Book Readers, Game Consoles, Mobile Phones, Notebooks, Printers, Smartphones, Tablets, Technology adoption, TUP 2016, TUPdate

Who spends most on tech – older or younger adults? (MetaFAQs)

In many tech circles, there’s a strong attention on the youngest adults. How true is it that younger adults spend more than older adults?

Our research shows that when it comes to household tech spending, age matters, although it’s not that simple.

First of all, while the youngest adults often are the most enthusiastic about technology, they don’t have the same financial means of older adults.

The majority of household tech spending is among adults age 30-39.metafacts-mqxxxx-tech-spending-x-age-2016-11-01_07-51-20

More importantly, when adjusting for employment status – including the self-employed – the analysis is clearer. Employed adults out-spend those not employed from ages 25 to 54.

There’s a “late life kicker” that’s important to note. After age 60, household tech spending is stronger among those not employed than those employed. Also, although employment rates decline with age, total household tech spending is stronger among the age 65-69 group than the age 55-59.

This is based on our most recent research among 7,336 US adults as part of the Technology User Profile (TUP) 2016 survey.

This MetaFAQs research result addresses one of the many questions profiling active technology users. Specifically for this analysis, we looked at household tech spending along 15 categories of technology devices and services, from PCs, printers, and routers to Internet and mobile phone service.

Many other related answers are part of the full TUP service, available to paid subscribers. The TUP chapters with the most information about activities is the TUP 2016 User Profile Chapter, which includes sections more deeply analyzing by age and life stage.

These MetaFAQs are brought to you by MetaFacts, based on research results from their most-recent wave of Technology User Profile (TUP).

For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

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Filed under Consumer research, Demographics & Econographics, Households, Market Research, MetaFAQs, TUP 2016

What is the demographic profile of Game PC Users? (MetaFAQs)

Game Desktops and Game Notebooks are coming into their own, reaching beyond the niche enthusiast.

However, they’re missing a key active game-playing segment – females. As we’ve reported in an earlier MetaFAQ, there is near gender equality for game players using Smartphones, Tablets, Game Consoles and everyday PCs.

Young males, age 25-34, are the major users for gaming desktops and gaming notebooks, using them at twice and three times the rate of the average connected adult.metafacts-metafaqs-mq0672-2016-10-23_10-49-11

Although targeting gaming enthusiasts is a successful strategy, only focusing on the formerly-strongest users misses out on a large segment of active players that could use some extra attention.

This may present a challenge to the makers of gaming PCs such as ASUS, Acer, Dell/Alienware, or HP, as they will need to make some adjustments to their marketing.

Female game players that are already active across many platforms are also big tech spenders.

Game PC companies that miss out on serving this segment might find their game over.

This MetaFAQs research result addresses one of the many questions profiling active game-players.

Many other related answers are part of the full TUP service, available to paid subscribers. The TUP chapter with the most information about game players across all devices and platforms is the TUP 2016 Game Consoles, Gaming PCs and Game-Playing Chapter.

These MetaFAQs are brought to you by MetaFacts, based on research results from their most-recent wave of Technology User Profile (TUP).

For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

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Filed under Demographics & Econographics, Desktops, Entertainment, Game Consoles, Market Research, MetaFAQs, Notebooks, TUP 2016

Is there an age skew for using refilled printer ink? (MetaFAQs)

Who refills their printer ink, or buys refilled toners or cartridges?

Younger adults use refilled ink more often than older adults, with the practice being strongest among printer users age 18-34. In fact, nearly half of printer users using refilled ink are under age 35, and among these younger adults, refill usage rates exceed one in three.

In our other TUP research, we’re finding that while overall printing levels have declined over the last five years, certain segments of graphically-oriented users are printing more than ever. Also, subscription ink replacement plan usage is growing.

About this MetaFAQ

In addition to profiling the spending, demographics, activities, and devices of printer users, many other related answers are part of the TUP service, available to paid subscribers. One section of TUP 2016 which includes extensive results about printers, printer users, and printing activities – the TUP 2016 Printers chapter. This is one of more than a dozen chapters in the entire TUP 2016 study.

These MetaFAQs are brought to you by MetaFacts, based on research results from the most-recent wave of Technology User Profile (TUP).

For more information about MetaFacts and subscribing to TUP, please contact MetaFacts.

Age Skew for using Refilled Printer Ink

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Filed under Consumer research, MetaFAQs, Printers, TUP 2016

Technology Consumer Demographics – solid market research from MetaFacts Technology User Profile

Extensive information about technology consumer demographics is available in TUP – Technology User Profile.

It’s not enough to know that someone may buy your product or service – it’s vital to know who and how many. True technology marketers and researchers know well how important it is to understand their current and future customers.

Often, the fabled early adopters have had a different demographic makeup than expected, causing serious mistakes and disconnects. The changes are far from over.

Below are a few examples of questions addressed in TUP related to technology consumer demographics. The full TUP service enables drilling down beyond the answers to these questions to identify which other technologies, services and behaviors 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.

  • Age-related market adoption – which products and services are age-skewed? Which are skewed toward older rather than younger users?
  • Multitasking – who’s using many devices for many activities, versus few devices for many activities? How do user segments vary by quadrant?
  • How many seniors are online? How is their behavior different than younger online users?
  • Which smartphone OS is leading, and with which market segments?
  • Do PC users behave differently as they gain more experience? Are Newbies or Vets mostly focusing on certain activities versus a broad mixture?
  • Tech adoption cycles may not be as fast as the tech-focused think. How many and which users still use older tech products?
  • Is social networking only for certain age groups?
  • How do the market segments of mobile phone platforms vary? How does compare to Tablets and other key devices?
  • How does PC and online usage vary across segments such as workplace company size or industry?
  • 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?
  • 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?
  • Do Apple users “grow up and give up” their Apple? When do they get one again, if they do?
  • What is the impact on privacy concerns on use of social networking?
  • How much of the game-playing population is older versus younger?
  • What do most people do with their mobile phone as compared to their PC? Which user segments align with which platforms?
  • Who is printing coupons?
  • Who’s busiest – desktop users or notebook users? How do their profiles differ?
  • How central is game-playing to the general population? How about within certain key market segments?
  • Who is buying the highest-end PCs? Are there brand differences? What else do users buy and what else do they use?
  • Most-mobile customers – where do they go and what do they do?
  • Who spends the most hours online?
  • Which segments are the most music-intensive? What is the overlap of music-centered products and services by segment?
  • How tech-experienced are game-players?
  • How much have PC users integrated PCs into their personal lives?
  • How has the division of work vs. personal use of technology products continued to blur?
  • 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?
  • What types and combinations of consumer electronics are homes using?
  • How many and which segments are watching and renting movies on which platforms?
  • How do market segments vary in demand opportunities for tech products and services?
  • To what extent do tech shoppers focus on certain channels for certain products versus staying with a smaller number of outlets?
  • Which market segments are dating online?
  • What else do they frequently do online? Have game-players been the first to adopt new products such as the Apple iPhone? Or, are they generally later adopters?
  • Which social networking sites are used most frequently by which segments?
  • How tech-sophisticated are game-players, within key gaming segments?
  • To what extent does game-playing drive online usage specifically and tech usage overall?
  • Special printer paper? Who uses it and what for? Is it only photos, or something else?
  • Which market segments are blogging? How do they compare to social networkers?
  • How are users communicating, given all their communication options?
  • How do consumer attitudes about purchasing technology differ between Apple, Hewlett Packard and Dell customers?
  • Do mobile PC users print differently than desktop users? Do the more-mobile use more or fewer printers? Do the more-mobile print different content?
  • Which PC brands dominate the PC market? How does this vary within market segment?
  • Are Apple’s best customers really unique?
  • What about the unemployed? Are they more or are they less tech-focused?
  • 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?
  • How is HP’s PC penetration within the overall HP footprint?
  • 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?
  • Beyond paper or plastic: which types of ink & toner are printer users buying? New or refilled? Original or competitor?
  • Which industry groups have varied levels of tech product adoption?
  • Which tech buyers focus more on retail than shopping online and vice versa?
  • What is the status of mobile phone transition, from basic feature phones to smartphones and non-users?
  • How rich is the user’s printing experience? Do they use only one printer or more than one? For multi-printer users, which ones do they use? Who are the most-active printer users?
  • Tracfone for oldsters? Who has the oldest segment by carrier?
  • How are Facebook users different from users of other Social Networks? Beside demographics, what else distinguishes these from each other?
  • Do game players bring their gaming with them into the workplace? To what extent? Which market segment does this the most?
  • 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?
  • How does the life and lifespan of a PC vary by form factor? Does it vary by brand? By user segment?
  • Which social networks show the most growth-oriented activity? Which segments show signs of losing interest or withdrawing?
  • Are Apple’s retail shoppers already the Apple-faithful or is Apple drawing in the unconverted? Who are these shoppers?
  • Who are the biggest tech spenders? Which segments spend the most and least for devices? How does spending for tech services differ?
  • iPhone users – who are they really? How do they compare with Android users?
  • Which segments are keeping their files, calendars, or other information synchronized or backed up online?
  • Primacy – what is the center of the user’s world? Their home PC, work PC, mobile phone? Is it one device or many?

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. This is all done using standard market research survey methodologies that do not use or share any personally identifiable information. All results are gathered with the clear and simple permission of survey respondents.

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

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 many other TUP editions for ready trend comparison.

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Filed under Consumer research, Households, Market Research, MetaFAQs, Statistics, Tech Market, Trends, TUP 2012, TUP 2013, TUP 2014, TUP 2015, TUP 2016, TUP 2017