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    Latest From Mobile Phone Wolrd - Seniors, Women Embracing Tablets, E-Readers



    Latest From Mobile Phone Wolrd -  Seniors, Women Embracing Tablets, E-ReadersMobile devices aren't just catering to the under-35 set now. Image: Nielsen


    If you thought tablets were being used only by Angry Birds-flinging youngsters or guys between 25 and 34, think again. Turns out tablets are all the rage with women and seniors.

    There hasn’t been much change in who’s using smartphones — they’re still most popular among the 20- and 30-something set — tablet and ereader ownership shows tablet ownership among those older than 55 climbed from 10 to 19 percent between last fall and this summer. As for e-readers, the number of women buying them climbed from 47 percent to 61 in the second quarter of this year.

    “Early adopters tend to be younger and male. As consumer technology products gain wider acceptance, more women and more older consumers join the mix,” says Don Kellogg, director of telecom research & insights at Nielsen.

    Although e-readers have been around for a while, tablets are a relatively new phenomenon marked by the arrival of the Apple iPad in 2010.

    The tablet has followed a similar trajectory as the microwave oven, creating a new niche in the market based on its convenient, portable form factor — despite the fact it has less computing power than its PC counterparts. Depending upon which study you’re looking at, some reports show tablet ownership is eating into the e-reader market, while others disagree. Regardless, both devices appear to be permeating all age groups.

    So what’s making tablets and e-readers so successful with the older crowd?

    “Tablets and e-readers are relatively easy to use. Couple that with light weight and the ability to increase the text size (not to be underestimated with older owners), and you have a very appealing product for older demographics,” Kellogg said.

    Not to mention, Apple products, like the iPad, are beginning to permeate the enterprise business environment, so many users who may not have seen value in the tablet before can use it for meetings and presentations.

    As you might expect, e-readers continue to be popular with those who read a lot. Although tablet apps like Kindle and Instapaper make tablet reading easy as pie, e-readers’ black and white E-Ink or electronic paper displays make the activity easier on the eyes. And when you’re traveling, bringing a 1 to 2-pound e-reader is a whole lot easier than lugging around a couple of novels.

    Nielsen is still studying if these trends apply outside the United States, and how mobile device usage differs among the different age groups they surveyed.

    Have your parents or grandparents adopted mobile devices? Did they do it willingly, or was it originally a gift that you lovingly thrust upon them? Share your experiences in the comments.







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