AdAge reports today on an interesting survey from the Consumer Electronics Association in the US, which offers some evidence that consumers no longer see new technology as a discretionary purchase – but as an intrinsic part of their everyday lives. And they are sacrificing clothes and food to pay for those smartphone upgrades. (Sort of.) We’ve also heard anecdotal evidence in the UK that consumers place their digital TV subscription above their credit card bill in their hierarchy of things they must pay this month.
What’s interesting is that this appears to be more than simple cocooning or feel-good purchasing in the midst of a recession. When it comes to consumer electronics, “must-have” has gone from being an empty marketing buzzword to a pretty accurate summary of consumer attitudes.