“As the digital market continues to evolve, Canadian consumers are largely unaware of how it is actually changing. As a result, it’s important for brands to speak to consumers in a language they understand, focusing on promoting the real-life implications of new tech, rather than on a catchy new name.”
– Michael Lloy, Senior Tech & Media Analyst

This Report looks at the following areas:

  • Tech purchases made in the past six months.
  • Consumer engagement with and participation in 5G networks.
  • Consumer familiarity with new and emerging technologies.
  • Consumer engagement with and participating in new and emerging technologies.
  • Consumer cost-saving measures in case of financial hardship.

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Key issues covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • Top takeaways
            • Market overview
              • Digital trends outlook
                • Figure 1: Category outlook, digital tech trends, 2022-27
              • Opportunities
                • Language that consumers understand can help engage them over new tech
                  • Young women are interested in cryptocurrency
                    • Challenges
                      • Can tech promotions and instalment plans stave off an inflation-induced sales decline?
                      • Market Factors – Economic Indicators

                        • Inflation is a top-of-mind concern for most Canadians
                          • Figure 2: Canadian Consumer Price Index, 2020-22
                        • Nearly all Canadians are worried about inflation
                          • Figure 3: Canadian market concerns (net any rank), 2022
                        • Household savings are the lowest they have been since Q1 2020
                          • Figure 4: Canadian household savings rate, Q1 2019-Q2 2022
                        • Canada’s aging population will likely put pressure on Millennial households
                          • Figure 5: Canadian population age projections, yearly, 2000-40
                        • Global uncertainty, chip shortages and supply chain issues persist
                          • Canada’s younger generations are significantly more ethnically diverse
                            • Figure 6: Ethnic origins, by age, 2016
                          • Diversity among future generations is projected to increase
                            • Figure 7: Canadian population age projections, yearly, 1981-2040
                        • Competitive Strategies

                            • Meeting the needs of young consumers via the lens of the Identity Trend Driver
                              • Work Louder has created a fully customizable modular keyboard to support each individual user
                                • Figure 8: Work Louder Instagram post, 2022
                              • Samsung tapped into users’ individuality to promote its smartphones via TikTok challenge
                                • Figure 9: Samsung TikTok post, 2021
                              • With the new Silhouette TikTok filter, Apple recruited creators to help do their marketing
                                • Figure 10: Samsung TikTok post, 2022
                              • Meeting the needs of young consumers through the lens of the Surroundings Trend Driver
                                • Will Canadians turn to tech to solve the housing crisis?
                                  • Figure 11: Unique Stay Canada Fibonacci house Instagram post, 2021
                                • TELUS’ Mobile Health Clinics show consumers it cares
                                  • Figure 12: TELUS Mobile Health Clinic Twitter post, 2021
                                • Meeting the needs of young consumers via the lens of the Technology Trend Driver
                                  • The future is here with “live shopping”
                                    • Figure 13: Livescale Instagram post, 2021
                                  • L’Oréal went live
                                    • Figure 14: L’Oréal’s Beauty Festival Instagram post, 2021
                                  • Walmart explores Metaverse trademarks
                                    • Hypnotic uses AR to let users wear “CGI clothing”
                                      • Figure 15: Hypnotic Instagram post, 2022
                                    • Meeting the needs of young consumers through the lens of the Wellbeing Trend Driver
                                      • Samsung gamifies health and turns it into a competitive, but friendly social experience
                                        • Figure 16: Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Instagram post, 2021
                                      • Meeting the needs of young consumers through the lens of the Experience Trend Driver
                                        • Spotify has acquired the music trivia game Heardle
                                          • Figure 17: Spotify Heardle Instagram post, 2021
                                      • Attitudes towards Tech: Millennials vs Gen Z – Fast Facts

                                        • Recent Tech Purchases

                                          • Continuing an ongoing trend, smartphones continue to lead tech purchases
                                            • Figure 18: New tech purchases over the past six months, 2022
                                          • Younger consumers drive most tech purchases
                                            • Figure 19: New tech purchases over the past six months, by age, 2022
                                          • Income plays a role in newer, luxury tech, but not smartphone purchases
                                            • Figure 20: Smart home tech purchases over the past six months, by household income, 2022
                                            • Figure 21: RBC iPad Facebook post, 2022
                                          • Families are driving tech purchases
                                            • Figure 22: Tech purchases over the past six months, by parental status, 2022
                                          • Multicultural consumers are driving new purchases
                                            • Figure 23: Tech purchases over the past six months, by race, 2022
                                          • When confronted by economic hardship, consumers try to make get the most out of their tech
                                            • Figure 24: Tech budget cuts, 2022
                                            • Figure 25: Sony Electronics trade-in Twitter post, 2022
                                          • Older consumers are more likely to hold off on upgrading, while younger consumers find other alternatives
                                            • Figure 26: Tech budget cuts, 18-44s vs over-45s, 2022
                                        • On 5G: Adoption, Usage and Awareness

                                          • Slowly but surely, 5G adoption rates are increasing
                                            • Figure 27: 5G awareness, device ownership and subscriptions, 2022 vs 2021
                                          • Men aged 35-54, surprisingly, lag behind their female counterparts for 5G adoption
                                            • Figure 28: 5G adoption, by age and gender, 2022
                                            • Figure 29: Bell 5G Twitter post, 2022
                                          • Women more likely to cite a lack of 5G knowledge, or reject it entirely
                                            • Figure 30: 5G awareness and interest, by age and gender, 2022
                                            • Figure 31: Bell 5G Twitter post, 2022
                                        • Spotlight on: Cryptocurrency and the Blockchain

                                          • While many have heard the terms, few are knowledgeable in cryptocurrency and blockchain
                                            • Figure 32: Awareness and knowledge of crypto- and blockchain-related tech, 2022
                                          • Consumers are relatively unaware of the foundational tech behind Crypto and NFTs – the blockchain
                                            • Figure 33: Awareness of blockchain technology, by age and gender, 2022
                                          • Across demos, awareness of cryptocurrency is high, but men report having the highest knowledge of the tech
                                            • Figure 34: Awareness of cryptocurrency, by age and gender, 2022
                                            • Figure 35: Coinbase Facebook post, 2021
                                          • Chicken or the egg – are negative associations driving the knowledge gap, or is a lack of knowledge driving misinformation?
                                            • Figure 36: Cryptocurrency associations, men vs women, 2022
                                            • Figure 37: Cryptocurrency associations, men 18-34 vs women 18-34, 2022
                                            • Figure 38: Coinbase Twitter post, 2022
                                          • NFT awareness is much lower than cryptocurrency while also being driven by young men
                                            • Figure 39: Awareness of NFTs, by age and gender, 2022
                                            • Figure 40: Ubisoft Quartz Twitter post, 2021
                                          • Young men are also more likely to stretch the truth when citing their knowledge of new technologies
                                            • Figure 41: Awareness of cyber reality, by age and gender, 2022
                                          • Usage and interest trends typically mirror knowledge and awareness
                                            • Figure 42: Participation in tech-related behaviours, 2022
                                            • Figure 43: Coinbase TikTok post, 2022
                                          • Once again, young men are most likely to have engaged with NFTs and cryptocurrencies
                                            • Figure 44: Participation in tech-related behaviours, men 18-34 vs overall, 2022
                                            • Figure 45: Participation in tech-related behaviours, men vs women, 2022
                                        • Spotlight on: The Metaverse

                                          • What is the metaverse?
                                            • Consumers are aware but lack knowledge of the metaverse
                                              • Figure 46: Knowledge and awareness of the metaverse, 2022
                                            • Young women are driving a gendered a lack of knowledge about the Metaverse
                                                • Figure 47: Knowledge of the metaverse, by age and gender, 2022
                                                • Figure 48: Knowledge of the metaverse, by age and gender, 2022
                                              • More consumers are aware of virtual reality than the Metaverse
                                                • Figure 49: Knowledge of the AR, VR and the metaverse, 2022
                                              • Similar to cryptocurrency, negative associations may be driving a lack of further interest in the metaverse
                                                • Figure 50: Metaverse associations, 2022
                                                • Figure 51: Metaverse associations, men vs women, 2022
                                                • Figure 52: LG Metaverse tweet, 2022
                                              • Age is also directly correlated with positive Metaverse associations
                                                • Figure 53: Metaverse associations, by age, 2022
                                              • A significant portion of consumers are interested in interacting via the Metaverse
                                                • Figure 54: Metaverse-related behaviours, 2022
                                                • Figure 55: Interest in metaverse-related behaviours, by age and gender, 2022
                                            • The Future of the Internet: Innovation, Trends and AI

                                              • Usage of cloud technology has facilitated both knowledge and awareness
                                                • Figure 56: Knowledge of internet-related tech, 2022
                                              • Young men are driving knowledge and awareness of existing and emerging internet technology
                                                • Figure 57: Knowledge of internet-related tech, men 18-34 vs overall, 2022
                                                • Figure 58: Alienware x15 and x17 R1 | First Look, 2021
                                              • 18-34 men also engage significantly more often with non-storage cloud services
                                                • Figure 59: Cloud gaming interest, by age and gender, 2022
                                                • Figure 60: Xbox Cloud Gaming TikTok post, 2022
                                            • Digital Identification and Security

                                              • Many Canadians still aren’t aware of “digital ID”, despite likely using one during the pandemic
                                                • Figure 61: Knowledge of digital identification, by age and gender, 2022
                                              • Most Canadians could do more to protect their identity and secure their data
                                                  • Figure 62: Digital security measures, 2022
                                                • Age plays a significant role in how Canadians engage with personal data security
                                                  • Figure 63: Digital security measures, by age, 2022
                                                  • Figure 64: Microsoft password TikTok post, 2022
                                                  • Figure 65: Coinbase Twitter post, 2021
                                                  • Figure 66: NordVPN TikTok post, 2022
                                              • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                • Data sources
                                                  • Consumer survey data
                                                    • Consumer qualitative research
                                                      • Mintel Trend Drivers
                                                        • Abbreviations and terms
                                                          • Abbreviations
                                                            • Terms

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