Telia Trend Report 2007: Look out, kids – here comes IT-Grandma!

– One out of five persons age 60+ reads blogs and one out of three will buy a web camera this year. People age 60 and older are a curious generation and they prefer to copy their children and grandchildren instead of their parents. This is especially evident in their technology and communication habits, which resemble those of teenagers more and more. The Telia Trend Report, which polled approximately 10,000 private and enterprise customers in Sweden, indicates that almost one out of three persons over the age of 60 is planning to buy a web camera this year, while one out of five reads blogs and two out of five use their mobile to take pictures. In Sweden, almost eight out of ten persons age 60 or older are sending digital photos or film clips to family and friends. More than one out of five is downloading music from the Web, and just as many are downloading movies instead of renting them from a video shop or buying a DVD.

Persons aged 60+ are particularly willing to shop on the Internet. One out of two persons age 60+, who was surveyed for the Telia Trend Report, is planning to buy more on the Web this year. The corresponding figure last year was 39 percent. Reading blogs is a new fun thing to do, which 23 percent do regularly. The corresponding figure for the entire Swedish population is 25 percent. People age 60+ prefer reading blogs about politics and social issues, unlike young people, who would rather read blog journals.

“I’m amazed at how fast this generation has started to do what teenagers began doing a few years ago. People age 60 or older are extremely curious and they understand the benefits of new communication methods,” says Erik Hallberg, head of Broadband Services for TeliaSonera in Sweden.

Learning from their children

Forty-one percent of people age 60 or more gladly use their mobile phone to take pictures and film video clips, and 37 percent said they would like to do it. However, when asked if their digital memories could possibly be lost when stored on a computer’s hard drive, only 3 percent in this age group was worried, compared with one out of five persons under the age of 26. Perhaps this is why one out of two persons age 60 or older has private photos stored on computers that are not on backup files. Or perhaps the backup copying process is considered difficult, time-consuming and not particularly fun, because the survey indicates that young users are also bad at making backup copies.

The younger children of people age 60+ are their parent’s source of inspiration. Almost two out of ten say that their children have taught them more about Internet security. The following are other things that their children have taught them:

1. Showed them useful web pages (25 percent)

2. Taught them to search more effectively on the Internet (23 percent)

3. Showed how to download ringtones (19 percent)

4. Showed how to download music to their computer/mobile (18 percent)

5. Taught them about computer and Internet security

About the Telia Trend Report 2007

Telia conducted two separate online surveys to poll private and enterprise customers. The survey of private persons covered 8,887 Telia customers, who responded to questions about communications in the home. Of these customers,1,659 were older than 60. All of Sweden was represented in the survey and the respondents were of all ages. The survey of companies encompassed 1,404 of Telia’s enterprise customers who responded to questions about communications at work. The respondents had titles such as Managing Director, CFO and IT Manager. All of Sweden was represented in the survey and the size of the responding companies varied from less than ten employees to more than 500 employees. The surveys were conducted from December 14, 2006 to January 11, 2007. The Telia Trend Report was produced in association with United Minds, a Stockholm-based consulting company specializing in trend analysis and business intelligence.