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Mobile Technology Changing Spending Patterns

STAMFORD, CONN. — Mobile technology adoption rates are increasing faster, and this is beginning to have a fundamental impact on worldwide spending patterns, according to a study by Gartner.

Absorbing media content on a mobile platform, both in the home and on the road, is beginning to replace the environment centered on a home’s television or desktop/ laptop computer, Gartner said. While this is still an early-adopter trend, Nick Ingelbrecht, research director at Gartner, said this is becoming a mainstream behavior.

“Consequently, technology and service providers are faced with no alternative but to innovate for mobility. If they do nothing, they face a potential train wreck as consumers abandon gadgets, services and applications that do not fully support changing mobile lifestyles,” he said.

Amanda Sabia, principal research analyst at Gartner, said this shift is creating both problems and opportunities for vendors. Older CE staples like TVs and desktop computers are experience stable growth cycles, but consumers are holding onto these much longer than in the past. Home-network and media-streaming boxes are experiencing an uptick as people use these, via their mobile devices, to access home-based media content.

Gartner found that the replacement cycles for TVs and desktop PCs are now 4.5 years and four years, respectively, the highest among the products investigated. Most tablets, and even e-readers, are such new purchases that they have yet to be replaced by most of the respondents.

However, Gartner expects that when the time comes, people will likely spend their expendable income on these mobile devices, thus increasing the replacement period of their legacy devices.

The survey was conducted with 8,000 people in the U.S., U.K, Canada and the BRIC nations (Brazil, Russia, India and China).