Gartner Research

Mobile Devices Lose Their Cool

Published: 29 January 2014

ID: G00259082

Analyst(s): Meike Escherich, Roberta Cozza


Only one in 10 respondents to a recent Gartner study considered it "cool" to use a mobile device such as a smartphone, tablet or notebook PC. This suggests that to differentiate themselves, consumer device vendors must redefine the mainstream "cool factor."

Table Of Contents
  • Impacts


Impacts and Recommendations

  • People now purchase smartphones and tablets mainly as functional tools, which requires product managers to focus on technical specifications and usability
  • Now that tablet use is associated with being "cool" or part of the "in crowd" by only one in three users, manufacturers must determine how to keep producing devices of profound instinctive appeal, once existing ones have reached mainstream adoption
  • The "cool factor" seems to retain more importance in emerging markets than in mature markets, signifying an opportunity for manufacturers to build brands for first-time smart-device users
  • Users who think their devices cool are more likely than others to recommend the associated brands to friends, family and colleagues, so vendors need to segment their customer bases carefully both to maximize the usefulness of these users and to identify more mainstream buyers for whom messaging should focus on the coolness of the brand, not the devices

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