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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : July 07, 2017

Older smartphone users irritated by stereotype that they are confused by tech

A survey among UK residents aged 50 and over reveals significantly different attitudes towards owning and using a smartphone with less than half of those aged 61 and over using their device daily.

by Helen Leggatt

According to, who conducted the survey among 1,518 UK residents aged 50 and over, there is a drop in confidence using a mobile device after the age of 70.

"If we consider that those aged 70+ will have been around 40 when the first commercially available mobile phone, like the DynaTac 8000X, came onto the market, it is perhaps not surprising that they can find this type of technology confusing - they've had to learn the ropes later in life which is often harder," said Andrew Cartledge, Mobile Expert at

The survey found that interest in owning, and using, a smartphone drops off at around age 70. While over half of 50-65 year-olds using their smartphone every day, that drops to 33% among 71-75 year-olds and 28% among those between the ages of 76 and 80.

Among those aged 50-55, 26% will choose a smartphone with the latest features, and 82% will rely on their own knowledge or research to make a decision. Just 18% of those aged 50-55 ask colleagues, children or relatives to help them to pick a new phone. However, 70% of over 80s stated that they pick a phone that looks simple to use, whilst 20% will opt for the cheapest.

Smartphone users between the ages of 50 and 65 are annoyed by the assumption that their age means they are not tech savvy. Many have lived most of their lives with mobile phones available.

"It is really quite saddening that generalizations such as 'older people are confused by technology' exist, as they often contribute to a self-fulfilling prophecy," said survey respondent, Kevin Wiltshire, 55 from Sowerby Bridge, UK.

Tags: marketing, mobile, survey, UK

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