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Women Want Technology

Technology is ageless – and knows no gender boundaries, either

May 21, 2014 By Tara Hutton, director of market research, CEA
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A female hand swipes across the surface of a tablet to locate the desired app, taps quickly on the desired icon and begins to watch a video. This sentence can be used to describe myself, my 66-year-old mother and my two-year-old daughter. Three generations of females – all experiencing the benefits technology offers. Technology plays a key role in American women’s lives and will continue to do so.

In the 21st Century, adult women play numerous roles in society; serving as workers, moms, wives, girlfriends and chief household officers (CHOs), to name a few. We share similar roles to men, and in some cases have more roles to play – and juggle. Technology can and does play a key part in helping women achieve success across their numerous roles.

In fact, based on recent research from CEA, 74 percent of online American women are interested in technology. And, if we take a look at their self-described technology purchasing habits, about one in five (19 percent) consider themselves to be an early technology adopter, meaning they start to use technologies shortly after they are released into the marketplace. As such, you’ll find women alongside men waiting in line for the next Apple iPhone release or buying a new Ultra HD television.

But what specifically about technology is appealing to women? CEA finds that women are more apt than men to recognize the entertainment and information benefits provided by technology products they own. What’s more, around three in five women (62 percent) say their technology products help them succeed in life, significantly greater than the 48 percent of men who feel the same.

Women appreciate the many benefits technology offers because they use a variety of different products and services. In fact, the technologies women use are not that different from men. The top products online women use include televisions, computers (laptop and desktop), digital cameras and smartphones. But women are not only users; they are also engaged in the purchase process, with the majority (71 percent) of online women personally involved in the purchase of consumer electronics (CE) products. Based on findings from CEA’s recent 16th Annual CE Ownership and Market Potential study, the average adult woman spent $437 on CE devices in 2013. Considering there are roughly 122 million adult women in the U.S. according to the U.S. Census Bureau, this amounts to roughly $53 billion in spending contribution to the CE industry and the U.S. economy.

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