Intersperience research shows under-18s demand multi-functional phones
• 42% of children want to use a mobile to control other things in future
• 33% of under-18s expect to use a mobile for payment and purchase
• Parents willing to pay average of £20 a month for kids’ mobile bills
• Age 11 regarded as most appropriate age to give kids a mobile
London, UK, 20 February 2012 – Mobile phones must be able to connect with other devices and become a ‘remote control for life’ to satisfy demanding under-18s who represent the next generation of consumers, according to a new research report.
International consumer research specialist Intersperience asked 1,000 young people in the UK between age eight and 18 their views on mobiles, how they use them and how they would like to use them in future. The findings are part of a comprehensive ’Digital Futures’ study of how under-18s engage with technology, particularly with internet-enabled devices.
The research found that 42% of under-18s want to use a mobile to control other devices in future, compared to just 24% of adults. Children are also keener than adults on embracing new developments such as using a smartphone to buy things, with 33% expecting to use a mobile for payment and purchase and 25% expecting to use their phone as a ‘mobile wallet’ - significantly higher than for adults.
Under-18s already use mobiles for more functions than adults, particularly for games, photos, music and making videos. Children and teens are also four times more comfortable using their phones to store personal information than their parents.
In future young people want interconnectivity between mobiles and other digital devices and even household services such as cable or satellite TV or utility supplies. Eight to 11 year olds have the highest expectations from mobiles of the future with a strong emphasis on interconnectivity with entertainment functions such as gaming and movies.
Intersperience Chief Executive Paul Hudson said: “For under-18s the future is uncompromisingly mobile. They have a vision of a powerful multi-functional mobile which can connect with and control an array of other devices and services from a Sky+ box to home heating or lighting systems and functions we haven’t even thought of yet.”
He added: “Children’s view of the future is defined by far greater inter-connectivity between devices than their parents who regard even smartphones as primarily a phone that happens to do other things. The onus is on suppliers to develop innovative services in future that fit the lifestyle and aspirations of a new breed of ‘connected customers'.”
The findings imply that software developers, phone companies and service providers in general need to accelerate efforts in this area if they are to satisfy a generation of consumers for whom greater inter-connectivity, versatility and functionality are important factors.
Mobiles are reducing PC usage by children - twice as many under-18s said they would choose a phone over a PC for music downloads, emails or research while an even higher ratio would rather make purchases via mobile rather than via a PC.
In terms of affordability, the study found that smartphones are now within the reach of the current generation of teenagers with parents generally willing to pay around £20 a month to cover their children’s mobile bills.
It also revealed significant ‘pester power’ among children who put pressure on parents to buy them a mobile from as young as eight. Parents frequently buy children an iPod Touch as a compromise before caving in to pressure to buy a mobile and the majority regard age 11 as an appropriate age for a child to receive its first mobile.
As featured in the Telegraph article on 20 February 2012 - 'Parents think 11 is the most appropriate age for first mobile'
NOTES TO EDITORS
Media Contact: Valerie Darroch 07970 737708 E: email@example.com
Intersperience is an international consumer research specialist with expertise in consumer behaviour, experience and attitudes. The team has more than 25 years experience in analysing consumer behaviour. It employs a range of interpretative models and frameworks including a proprietary online research platform. Intersperience has significant global expertise and an international research hub at Lancaster University which conducts research in more than 60 languages as well as associates in major global markets. Intersperience is an expert in how technology impacts on consumer behaviour and multi-channel customer service strategy. Clients include:The British Council; General Motors; Iceland; Samsung; ScottishPower; and William Hill.
About the Intersperience Digital Futures research project:
Intersperience conducted a wide-ranging survey among 1,000 young people in the UK between the ages of eight and 18 on how they use the internet and internet-enabled devices. Participants mirrored the general UK population in terms of social class and of the total group, 35% were aged between eight and 11, 37% were aged 12 to 14, and the remainder were aged 15 to 17. In addition, the team carried out qualitative research among 15 families with children aged from two to 18 which included participation in family tasks such as video diaries, communication logs and mood diaries. Researchers also carried out 23 in-depth family interviews including 11 face-to-face interviews with under 18s. Field research was carried out between July and August 2011.
For more information:
Tel: + 44 (0) 15395 65450