Jokes about aging consumers who don’t know how to use their mobile phones should be a thing of the past. A majority has upgraded those phones to smart phones and they’re using them much like younger consumers. They are also rapidly increasing their use of mobile internet.
Within the last 3 years, mobile internet use by those aged 45-54 has increased from 28 to 53%. Those aged 55-64 have also increased their internet use from 17-30%.
* 45% of them have downloaded more than 10 apps in the last year.
* 33% of them read QR codes on their smartphones
* 35% download movies from Netflix or other streaming providers.
* 46% buy music by downloading it from a site like iTunes
Change is inevitable, especially technological change, and never more so than the rapid adoption of tablets- iPads in particular. Increasingly, older consumers are adopting the iPad and other tablets for email, accessing the internet, in fact, for every part of their life. Since the introduction of the iPad in 2010, consumers are finding and seeking lots of new ways to use this versatile device. After all, Baby Boomers and older consumers have been using technology for most of their working lives. They are also looking for technology that meets their needs. Tablets are ideal products for people who travel a lot, people who read a lot of books and people who rely on email to communicate.
Email has long been recognised as an easy way to connect and maintain contact with friends and family. Now, with social media, friends and family share their lives through comments, shared quotes, photos and images, links to video and shared interests. Over 154 million minutes are day are spent on social network sites. Those aged 50- 64 spend 20 minutes/day on social network sites. These sites include: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Flickr, YouTube etc. Many churches now have websites with links to Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, and some have their own app.
The Baby Boomer generation spends more time and money online than any other generation. An average of $650 every three months is spent online by those 47-65yrs, and the amount is growing. It's easy to access online shopping using an iPad or tablet- you can order while watching the TV or at the local coffee shop. While companies like Amazon and eBay have made their name in specialised retail spheres, businesses now recognise that, to survive, all businesses need an online presence. For some, this is little more than an online catalogue but increasingly shoppers are jumping online for their purchases, whether to compare prices or shop. And, shoppers are not content to shop within Australia alone but look to companies overseas for competitive prices and a larger range of merchandise. Many overseas companies are offering delivery of purchases within 3-4 days anywhere in the world. Shoppers are now sent information via email or text messages about special deals and sales whether pizza deals, grocery runs, discount holidays and more. Those businesses who do not keep pace with these new promotional strategies, are losing sales.
But tablets and iPads have increasingly highlighted the fun aspect of technology to the average user. Tablet owners ( aged18-64) spend almost four and a half hours on the internet each day compared with three and a half hours for non-tablet users.
So.. what are they doing? What apps appeal to users?
Tablets have real appeal as readers- ebooks. The cost of ebooks is substantially less and so easy to purchase and download instantly. Bibles and devotional material can be accessed via apps.Music and videos can easily be presented on tablets.
There are a huge number of games available- hugely popular games like Angry Birds and Cut the Rope, but also sudoku games, crosswords, strategy games, social games like Words with Friends and much more.
Apps help to organise your time and activities, provide journals and notebooks, remind you of birthdays and events and more. You can truly say, if there’s a need then there’s an app for that!