According to a new report by telecommunications giant, Ericsson, there are ten new observable trends for consumers this year that have fascinating implications for how technology is impacting on our society, with interesting fault lines emerging across age, gender and urban/regional divides.
To see this fascinating infographic in full, you can click here but for ease of reference, here are the key findings:
1. Reliance on Cloud computing reshapes computer usage: more than 50% of users preferred mobile and tablet devices and increasingly demanded the same access to all of their apps and for key data to be available across all platforms.
2. Computing for a scattered mind: rather than structuring their time and lives around technology, consumers now expect their devices to work around their lifestyle, with purchase rates for smartphones and tablets outstripping that for PCs.
3. BYO Broadband: more than half of all smartphone users now bring these devices to work, using their own broadband while in the office, and integrating their work and life data and useage.
4. Mobile coverage key to quality of life: where once a key determinant of urban happiness was measured by water pressure or TV reception, these measures have been replaced by the mobile telephone coverage strength as a yardstick of metropolitan quality of life.
5. DIY self-promotion: although in years gone by most people used recruitment agencies to find new work opportunities, these days it seems LinkedIn and Tweeting your CV are the new ways to get yourself hired.
6. Women driving on smartphone highway: women are outstripping men as the most frequent users of smartphones, with the bulk of use centred around sending/receiving SMS and sharing photos.
7. Social networks big in the cities: city dwellers are using social networks far more than the country cousins, with most using it to either update or stay up to date with friends and family, and the remainder using it to share and exchange ideas. This finding prompts the question about whether regional and remote communities still catch up the old fashioned way – i.e. face to face or on the telephone.
8. In-line shopping: no, this is not about picking out new rollerblades. Instead, a new phenomenon has emerged where consumers are using their smartphones and tablets to purchase online while they are actually in store. Apparently the buyer wants to visit the store to view the merchandise but then can’t be bothered queuing up to pay for it. Fascinating!
9. TV goes social: apparently watching TV is not stimulating enough, we feel the need to share while watching – users said they used social media while watching TV, and were more likely to pay for content that could be watched in a social context.
10. Learning in transformation: Younger people are bringing their technology to the learning space, at the same time that workplaces and education and training providers are finding new ways to enable mobile and home-based participation.
How is technology impacting upon your workspace? I would be interested to know your thoughts on this research, and discover if these findings ring true for you. Is technology exacerbating the divisions we have according to age, gender and location, or merely shining a light upon existing schisms?