What Do Consumers Think About New Digital Technologies? (Report)

While consumer confidence in virtual reality as a news source is still low, mobile users have a positive view of live video when it comes to getting the news.

Marketing choices are often led by technological developments. With increased reliance on the internet, marketers are catering to internet-first and, in some cases, mobile-only audiences. But what do consumers think of the technologies that could define the near future, such as wearables, virtual reality and live video? A report from text-to-video creation platform Wibbitz surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. internet users to find out.

Image credit: Michael Gray
Image credit: Michael Gray
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Wibbitz found that news-seeking internet and mobile audiences have the most positive outlook when it comes to live video, with 35 percent of survey respondents expressing a positive view; however, 25 percent had a negative view. The confidence is lowest when it comes to VR technologies, and while less skeptical about wearables and chat bots, the level of distrust among survey respondents was still at least twice the level of trust.

As with all technological developments, there are five kinds of users: innovators, early adopters, the early majority, the late majority and the laggards. Innovators are already using the technologies in question, while laggards will almost certainly never use these technologies, at least for gathering news.Screenshot 2016-09-13 at 13.57.17

Live video is already performing well, with 16 percent of the survey participants already using it to gather news. Five percent are early adopters and 33 percent are in the early majority category, meaning that once the technology is somewhat proven, they will be on board. 41 percent of frequent news viewers (10+ news stories a day) are fans of live video.

Chat bots, while favored by the most social users, are not a high priority for most users, with 68 percent of respondents saying they are either unlikely to adopt the technology or will never use it. 71 percent said the same of wearables, and 63 percent were very unconvinced by wearables.

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The report concludes that live video is the safest bet for video news production this year, which shouldn’t be surprising considering the large investments in the sector. However, it’s important to take into account just how dedicated the fans of other technologies are:

The few that have tried [VR] are singing its praise–and as VR headsets and screens become more accessible, more consumers will be exposed to the immersive news experience their millennial peers are raving about. If publishers play their cards right and start investing now, the future of news consumption will be seen through VR goggles.

For more insight, view the full report.

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