Communication platforms – fast, now, or visible? [TUPdate]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, March 12, 2021

The frustrated plea “can you hear me now?” has evolved to include “can you see me now?” During pandemic and suddenly-working-at-home times, video calls have driven home the importance of having a robust, fast, and synchronous connection. Asynchronous activities such as text messaging and email don’t have the same need for speed and an instantaneous persistent connection.

It got me wondering – are people choosing one device over another for communication that demands higher-bandwidth or low-latency connections? Is there an age difference preference for right-now synchronous versus later-on asynchronous communication activities? Furthermore, are there other aspects beyond bandwidth and immediacy that encourage people to choose one device over another for certain types of communications? Are video work meetings, for example, more PC-based than smartphone-based?

So, I investigated our results from TUP/Technology User Profile 2020 to compare how widely communication activities are in regular use. I netted together asynchronous activities separately from synchronous ones. Then, I looked at differences by device type – smartphone, home PC, and tablet. I also looked at differences by age group, knowing that younger adults often have different sensibilities and experiences around communication than older or the oldest adults.

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Synchronous or asynchronous communication – checking age preference [MetaFAQs]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, December 11, 2020

Communication is a vital and regular activity for connected devices. There are many choices – email, phone calls, video calls, video meetings, group chats – and the experience is different for each type. This MetaFAQs looks at asynchronous communication activities – those where the communicators don’t need to be engaged at the same time – to see how widespread their use is by age. It also looks at synchronous activities – where communications are in touch at the same time – to see how their usage levels vary.

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News, sports, and weather-for all ages, not all devices [MetaFAQs]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, November 5, 2020

Some information such as news, sports, and weather are most useful when they’re current and easily available. There are many ways to get this information across smartphones, PCs, or tablets. Some users are more actively intent on tapping into this information, and different age groups prefer different devices. This MetaFAQs reports on the active use of checking the news, sports, and weather information by smartphone, PC, tablet, or across all three. Further, it reports on activity levels by age group and country.

About MetaFAQs

MetaFAQs are answers to frequently asked questions about technology users. The research results showcase the TUP/Technology User Profile study, MetaFacts’ survey of a representative sample of online adults profiling the full market’s use of technology products and services. The current wave of TUP is TUP/Technology User Profile 2020, which is TUP’s 38th annual.

Current subscribers may use the comprehensive TUP datasets to obtain even more results or tailor these results to fit their chosen segments, services, or products. As subscribers choose, they may use the TUP inquiry service, online interactive tools, or analysis previously published by MetaFacts.

On request, interested research professionals can receive complimentary updates through our periodic newsletter. These include MetaFAQs – brief answers to frequently asked questions about technology users – or TUPdates – analysis of current and essential technology industry topics. To subscribe, contact MetaFacts.

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American iPhone carriers – a generational divide [MetaFAQs]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, October 13, 2020

Apple iPhones appeal more strongly to some age groups than others, just as certain wireless carriers have attracted more of some age groups than others. This MetaFAQs looks at the age distribution of American Apple iPhone users by their wireless carrier.

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Watching the Watches – Smartwatches and Fitness Bands [TUPdate]

Dan Ness, Principal Analyst, MetaFacts, December 19, 2019

Smartwatch and fitness band penetration tapers to 2016 levels

The race for the wrist has settled into a larger-than-niche and less-than-majority position. Over the last three years, the share of online Americans using at least one smartwatch has grown from one in six to one in five, only to settle back to the one in six level. This is based on TUP/Technology User Profile 2019 survey of 8,060 online adults in the US, and from the prior three annual waves.

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Game-playing trends – convenience gamers, dedicated gamers, and device-gamers [Highlights]

Overview

Playing games is a regular activity for most adults whether using game consoles or gaming PCs, or any of their connected devices – mobile phones, tablets, or PCs.

Convenience Gamers – those using only a connected device to play games – have near-equal market penetration to Dedicated Gamers – users of game consoles or gaming PCs.

Device-Gamers – who use any of their connected devices – is a larger segment than either Dedicated Gamers or Convenience Gamers.

This TUPdate looks at the major trends of game-playing in the US and other countries, focusing on Convenience Gamers – the next tier of game-players beyond Dedicated Gamers. Also, it examines which types of devices are used the most or least for playing games. Further, it investigates whether younger adults play more or less than older ones, and differences in digital media use and subscriptions.

About TUPdates

The analysis in this TUPdate is based on results drawn from the 2019 wave of TUP (Technology User Profile), which is TUP’s 37th continuous wave. Results from previous waves are also included where indicated. This survey-based study details the use of technology products by a carefully-selected and weighted set of respondents drawn to represent online adults.

On request, interested research professionals can receive complimentary updates through our periodic newsletter. These include MetaFAQs – brief answers to frequently asked questions – or TUPdates – analysis of current topics in the technology industry. To learn about subscribing to the TUP/Technology User Profile service, contact MetaFacts.

Usage guidelines: This document may be freely shared within and outside your organization in its entirety and unaltered. To share or quote excerpts, please contact MetaFacts.