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Technology Habits of Generation X - UK - March 2019

“Generation X grew up without access to many of the devices commonly found today, but they did live through a revolution of technology that included home console gaming, the mobile phone, and the internet. They represent a group that is technologically engaged, owning smartphones and laptops and regularly accessing social networks. They find devices that streamline their daily lives appealing, and are willing to adopt new technology if it demonstrates its value in this way.”
– Andrew Moss, Consumer Technology Analyst

This report will cover the following areas:

  • Influencers lacking influence in this generation
  • For a generation pressed for time, technology has to prove its worth

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Generational definitions
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • A generation neglected by advertisers
              • Figure 1: Generational structure of the UK population (projected), 2019
            • Children and family life increases tech exposure
              • A high-income generation with a lot of responsibilities
                • Dealing with pressures on time
                  • Figure 2: Activities Gen X don’t have time to do, November 2018
                • The consumer
                  • Becoming “smartphone first”
                    • New digital engagement platforms offered by voice control and wearables
                      • Figure 3: Personal ownership of technology devices, by generation, November 2018
                    • The phone upgrade cycle
                      • A group keen to try before they buy
                        • Favouring established social media platforms
                          • Figure 4: Social media use, by generation, November 2018
                        • Comfortable shopping online, but not on all devices
                          • Media consumption continues move towards streaming
                            • Figure 5: Activities performed on devices in the last three months, September 2018
                          • An opportunity for wearable technology
                            • What we think
                            • Issues and Insights

                              • Influencers lacking influence in this generation
                                • The facts
                                  • The implications
                                    • For a generation pressed for time, technology has to prove its worth
                                      • The facts
                                        • The implications
                                        • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                          • At the forefront of a digital revolution
                                            • A generation neglected by advertisers
                                              • A high-income generation with a lot of responsibilities
                                                • Dealing with pressures on time
                                                • Market Background

                                                  • At the forefront of a digital revolution
                                                    • A generation neglected by advertisers
                                                      • Figure 6: Generational structure of the UK population (projected), 2019
                                                    • Children and family life increases tech exposure
                                                      • Figure 7: Proportion of Gen X with children in household, by age of child, November 2018
                                                    • A high-income generation with a lot of responsibilities
                                                      • Figure 8: How respondents would describe their financial situation, by generation, November 2018
                                                    • Dealing with pressures on time
                                                      • Figure 9: Activities Gen X don’t have time to do, November 2018
                                                  • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                    • Becoming “smartphone first”
                                                      • Static games consoles – a nostalgia market?
                                                        • New digital engagement platforms offered by voice control and wearables
                                                          • Manufacturer websites key for product research
                                                            • A group keen to try before they buy
                                                              • Favouring established social platforms
                                                                • Comfortable shopping online, but not on all devices
                                                                  • An opportunity for wearable technology
                                                                  • Device Ownership

                                                                    • Becoming “smartphone first”
                                                                      • Abandoning the desktop
                                                                        • Static games consoles – a nostalgia market?
                                                                          • New digital engagement platforms offered by voice control and wearables
                                                                            • Figure 10: Personal ownership of technology devices, by generation, November 2018
                                                                        • Technology Purchasing and Discovery

                                                                          • The phone upgrade cycle
                                                                            • Figure 11: Purchase history of smartphones by Generation X, November 2018
                                                                          • New laptop form factors on the cusp of mass appeal
                                                                            • Figure 12: Purchase history of laptops by Generation X, November 2018
                                                                            • Figure 13: Purchase history of tablets by Generation X, November 2018
                                                                          • Manufacturer websites key for product research
                                                                            • A group keen to try before they buy
                                                                              • Advertising doesn’t resonate with this generation
                                                                                • Figure 14: Methods of researching new technology products, by generation, November 2018
                                                                            • Social Media Platforms

                                                                              • Gen-Xers caught up in the social network revolution
                                                                                • Favouring established platforms
                                                                                  • Not so influenced by influencers
                                                                                    • Figure 15: Social media use, by generation, November 2018
                                                                                    • Figure 16: Number of social networks accessed at least once a week, by generation, November 2018
                                                                                • Digital Activities

                                                                                  • Correspondence analysis
                                                                                    • Methodology
                                                                                      • Media consumption continues move towards streaming
                                                                                        • Social networking isn’t just a Millennial pastime
                                                                                          • Comfortable shopping online, but not on all devices
                                                                                            • Chatbots and messaging payments systems may prove a step too far
                                                                                              • Figure 17: Words associated with digital activities, November 2018
                                                                                              • Figure 18: Words associated with technology, November 2018
                                                                                              • Figure 19: Activities performed on devices in the last three months, January 2019
                                                                                              • Figure 20: Activities performed on devices in the last three months, September 2018
                                                                                          • Preferred Media Formats

                                                                                            • Gen Xers prefer physical music but are still warm targets for digital
                                                                                              • Prepared to pay for video streaming
                                                                                                • Figure 21: Generation X format preferences for purchased media, November 2018
                                                                                            • Digital Behaviours

                                                                                              • An opportunity for wearable technology
                                                                                                • Some reluctance to share data, but no more than other generations
                                                                                                  • Wellbeing the next frontier of digital tracking
                                                                                                    • Figure 22: Devices for monitoring health and fitness amongst Generation X, November 2018
                                                                                                  • Shopping and banking moving online
                                                                                                    • Over half “up to date”
                                                                                                      • Digital detox
                                                                                                        • Figure 23: Digital behaviours amongst Generation X, November 2018
                                                                                                    • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                        • Abbreviations
                                                                                                          • Consumer research methodology

                                                                                                          Technology Habits of Generation X - UK - March 2019

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