Young adults – the so-called Millennial generation of 16- to 27-year-olds – are passionate about being in control of of their rich media content. And they're influencing how older generations view their content.
This is one of the findings of Motorola's research into the consumer technology decisions and media consumption habits of the Millennial generation, drawn from a study of 1 200 young adults in Europe and the Middle East.
The study was commissioned to further understand the Millennials' viewing habits and how they move and share their content across devices. It found that not only do Millennials themselves engage with new technologies and services, they actively influence their parents' adoption habits: The majority of respondents stated that they influence the broadband (83%) or TV services (84%) purchased by their parents, even if they do not live at home.
"Technology is the lifeblood of this generation. Millennials feel that their personal lifestyle would change dramatically without Internet access. It is not surprising therefore to see their influence on technology purchasing for the home," says Joe Cozzolino, corporate vice-president and GM of Motorola Home & Networks Mobility EMEA.
"By understanding the needs and desires of this generation, Motorola is able to design and customise solutions for our customers that enable them to deliver rich media experiences to today's and tomorrow's consumer."
TV is unsurprisingly still a favored form of entertainment. However, it is how, where and when we watch that is changing significantly. The traditional TV schedule is becoming a thing of the past:
* 78% of Millennials would prefer a TV programme to restart the moment they switch over to that channel;
* Two-thirds (66%) would be interested in pausing TV in one room and restarting it in another. This compares to 86% of respondents in the US when surveyed earlier this year; and
* Almost one in three (32%) prefer to watch programmes on their PC rather than TV set.
Significant numbers of respondents want to be able to access full-length movies and their favourite shows on the move, yet it is through shorter bursts of content that mobile entertainment comes into its own:
* Having the option to shift TV programmes from the set-top at home to a mobile device enticed 81% of Millennials, demonstrating strong interest in increased media mobility
* 75% indicate that watching movies while travelling is appealing; and
* 62% would be interested in watching 15-minute mobile versions of 30-minute TV programmes and 61% would be interested in a three-minute version of their favourite shows on their mobile device.
Millennials influence older generations because their technology experiences run much deeper, with 63% of respondents acknowledging that their demands and expectations for rich media experiences are higher than those of their parents.
Millennials do not passively digest content; they are increasingly looking to interact with what is on the screen:
* Over half of those surveyed would like to be able to interact with their TV and accessing information about the content they are watching; and
* 68% would be interested in learning about and possibly purchasing items featured in TV shows, with the highest appetite coming from the UAE where 81% of the sample expressed interest.
There are strong signs that Millennials are adopting high definition TV (HDTV), and the figures point to a strong growth potential:
* HDTV is popular throughout all markets surveyed, especially in Germany and the UAE with 53% and 58% saying they love HD content;
* 43% of respondents have an HDTV set; the UK having the greatest market penetration with 54% owning an HDTV set; and
* Of the 57% of total respondents who didn't have an HDTV set, only one-quarter said they did not want to get one.
"Understanding how this group wants to engage with their content is crucial to developing intuitive experiences that allow them to interact as they wish," says Cozzolino. "In order for technology providers and content developers to stay on top of the media game they must keep up with the behaviors of the Millennials. It is the interests, passions and desires of this generation today that are shaping the landscape of tomorrow."