Published on March 16th, 2007 | by Tom1
New Study Shows: ‘Connected Mobility’ Defines Bubble Generation
Connected mobility–it is among the highest of human aspirations. To be free to roam and explore, while at the same time remaining tethered to loved ones, the office, the world. The everyday reality of that long-elusive freedom is a hallmark of the cohort I call the Bubble Generation, those men and women who have come of age after the Dotcom bubble burst.
Proof of that comes from a recent report out of the Pew Internet and American Life Project. According to their study, some 34 percent of Internet users have already exercised connected mobility by logging onto the Internet using a wireless connection either at home, work or elsewhere (like Starbucks). That means one-third of Internet users, either via a laptop computer, a handheld device (PDA), or cell phone, have cruised the net or checked email using means such as WiFi broadband or cell phone networks.
No surprise: wireless Internet users tend to skew younger than Internet users in general. For Internet users under the age of 30:
- 37% have logged on wirelessly from somewhere sometime
- 32% have logged on wirelessly from someplace other than home or work.
- 25% log on wirelessly at home.
- 16% have gone online by wireless means at work.
Laptops are still the tool of choice for Internet users under 30:
- 40% have laptop computers, of which 88% are wireless-enabled.
- 26% have wireless networks at home.
- 40% have cell phones that can access the Internet
- 17% have PDAs that can connect to the Internet.
It is interesting to note that of those 34 percent who link in while on the run most seem to stay better connected–checking email and news–than when they are at home:
- 72% of wireless users check email on the typical day, compared to 63% of home broadband users and 54% of all Internet users.
- 46% get news online on the typical day, compared to 38% of home broadband users and 31% of all Internet users.
So how do we as manufacturers, marketers and retailers make sense of this "rope line wanderlust?" We must ask ourselves, how does mobility shape consumer needs? How does connectivity alter consumer behavior? Do buyers become more or less impulsive, or, more or less reliant on the advice of others as they move about? Are they harder to find or easier to win over situationally? Stay tuned to this space for some answers.