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US Digital Trends Spring market report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Digital Trends Fall market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry and how fast are its rates of growth? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

Definition

This Report details the conduction of digital activities, including:

  • Use of product/service reviews
  • Streaming video
  • Casual gaming
  • Research for online shopping
  • Downloading apps and games
  • Online dating
  • Online shopping
  • Digital couponing
  • Use of brand properties including YouTube channels, websites, games, and apps
  • Podcasts
  • Streaming content to television sets
  • Tracking fitness activity
  • Blogging

This Report is the first in the Digital Trends series in which a device agnostic approach was used for the survey methodology. The second title in this series to do so will be Digital Consumer (Hardware) – US, September 2018. As a result of this change, the Report does not trend responses with previous titles in this series, with the exception of in how consumers access the internet.

This Report does not focus specifically on the use of social media as Mintel devotes an entire separate Report to the subject, Social Media Trends – US, April 2018.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Billy Hulkower, a leading analyst in the Technology sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

With ever expanding means of accessing the internet, ranging from skills on smart speakers to television apps to podcasts, brands face an increasingly daunting task of determining the best points of contact; adding to the difficulty of this task is the finding that the same demographic groups run above average in the use of most digital media (including young adults age 18-34, the middle-income groups with annual household incomes from $25K-$99.9K, and Hispanics). However, there are points of division in usage that can be seized upon, in particular when it comes to gender, where men tend to over-index on entertainment pursuits, while women show higher levels of usage for sponsored stories, branded apps, and how-to videos. Billy Hulkower
Senior Technology Analyst

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Key technology market segments saturated
            • Figure 1: Household television ownership April 2015-February 2016
          • Consumers show mixed feelings toward technology
            • Figure 2: Attitudes toward technology, February 2016
          • The opportunities
            • Smaller devices still growing
              • Figure 3: Household laptop and desktop ownership, 2015-16
            • Growth shifting toward services
              • Figure 4: Frequency of online activities, February 2016
            • What it means
            • The Market – What You Need to Know

              • 5G will pave the way for richer mobile media
                • Native advertising growing
                • Market Factors

                  • Verizon plans to roll out 5G in 2017
                    • Figure 5: Mobile app usage, August 2015
                  • Consumers adopting ad blockers, pushing marketers toward native ads
                  • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                    • Streaming video revenue climbing
                      • Desktops falter in light of more portable hardware
                        • New content to drive interest in hardware
                        • What’s Working?

                          • Streaming video making dramatic gains
                          • What’s Struggling?

                            • Desktops lose share of computer market
                              • Figure 6: Household laptop and desktop ownership, by age, February 2016
                          • What’s Next?

                            • AR, VR, and 4K to spur interest in hardware
                            • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                              • Consumers show demand for smart media hardware and tablets
                                • Streaming video leads activities done online
                                  • Hispanics readily adopt social-oriented technologies
                                    • High connectivity leading to ambivalence
                                    • Household Technology Products Ownership

                                      • Televisions
                                        • Majority of consumers own HD, UHD, Smart, or 3D TVs
                                          • Figure 7: Household television ownership, February 2016
                                          • Figure 8: Household television ownership (any TV) 2010-15
                                        • Consumers 54 and under making the switch to Smart TVs
                                          • Figure 9: Household smart television ownership, by gender and age, February 2016
                                        • Many parents are ready for 4K
                                          • Figure 10: Household UHD television ownership, by age of children, February 2016
                                        • Laptop and desktop computers
                                          • The push for portable computing continues
                                            • Figure 11: Household laptop and desktop ownership, 2015-16
                                          • Laptop ownership nearly universal among 44 and younger
                                            • Figure 12: Household laptop and desktop ownership, by age, February 2016
                                          • Opportunity to target laptop buyers among Black consumers
                                            • Figure 13: Household laptop and desktop ownership, by race and Hispanic origin, February 2016
                                          • Tablets and e-readers
                                            • Continued growth in tablet market, e-readers stagnate
                                              • Figure 14: Household tablet and e-reader ownership, February 2016
                                            • Majority of lower-income households do not have tablets
                                              • Figure 15: Household tablet ownership, by household income, February 2016
                                          • Personal Technology Products Ownership

                                            • Little change for most personal electronics
                                              • Figure 16: Personal electronics ownership, 2015-16
                                            • Smartwatch owners in the minority, but market share growing
                                              • Figure 17: Personal smartwatch ownership, 2014-16
                                            • Fitness trackers as a bridge to smartwatches
                                              • Figure 18: Personal technology products ownership, by gender and wearables ownership, February 2016
                                          • Methods of Internet Access

                                            • Smart TVs increasingly used for internet access
                                              • Figure 19: Methods of internet access, April 2015-February 2016
                                            • Younger consumers: Access from anywhere
                                              • Figure 20: Methods of internet access, by age, February 2016
                                          • Frequency of Online Activities

                                            • Paid streaming video and account sharing
                                              • Figure 21: Frequency of online activities, February 2016
                                            • Streaming music faces challenges in engaging young women
                                              • Figure 22: Frequency of online activities (daily), by gender and age, February 2016
                                            • Hispanics are social content creators
                                              • Figure 23: Frequency of online activities (daily), by gender and age, February 2016
                                          • Consumers’ Intent to Purchase Technology Products

                                            • Consumer purchase intent reinforces growth for portable hardware
                                                • Figure 24: Purchase intent for electronics products, February 2016
                                              • Hispanics and Asians show heightened purchase intent for UHD devices
                                                  • Figure 25: Purchase intent for electronics products, by race and Hispanic origin, February 2016
                                              • Consumers’ Attitudes toward Technology

                                                • Consumers recognize the negative impact of technology
                                                    • Figure 26: Attitudes toward technology, February 2016
                                                  • Younger consumers want to learn more about technology
                                                      • Figure 27: Attitudes toward technology, by gender and age, February 2016
                                                    • Hispanics, Asians see themselves as early adopters
                                                        • Figure 28: Attitudes toward technology, by race and Hispanic origin, February 2016
                                                    • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                      • Data sources
                                                        • Consumer survey data
                                                          • Abbreviations and terms
                                                            • Abbreviations
                                                            • Appendix – Consumer

                                                                • Figure 29: Personal technology products ownership, by gender and wearables ownership, February 2016
                                                                • Figure 30: Methods of internet access, by household income, February 2016