Which type of mobile Internet user are you?
Are you a ‘Road Warrior’ or a ‘Gadget Joy’? New research categorizes mobile Internet users into six distinct clusters.
New findings by research firm Point Topic clusters mobile Internet users into clusters or groups – making it easier for companies to develop the new mobile Internet market quicker and more successfully.
According to Point Topic the research provides a way for everybody in the business – such as telecoms operators, companies providing music or video content, and suppliers of of mobile devices – to pinpoint their target markets more quickly and successfully.
The research has shown there is widespread interest in accessing the internet on the move, whether through the mobile phone networks or at WiFi hotspots. But there are already a wide variety of people doing this for many different reasons.
By classifying the users into different groups or “clusters” and identifying their needs and wants, the researchers are confident that suppliers can optimise their products and services to fit the market.
“Think of them as like the audiences for different radio channels,” says Tim Johnson, Chief Analyst at Point Topic.
“You’ve got to have the right mix of content and features to get the audience to tune in. People can use the profiles of these clusters in the same way, to work out what they need to offer a particular segment of the market.”
The different types of users
Each cluster has been given a name to summarize its special features. Some of them are readily recognizable to anyone who knows the mobile internet (MI) market.
Road Warriors are the well-paid executives, often male and middle-aged, who use laptops and Blackberries for their work when they are travelling.
Gadget Joys are the technology lovers who want to be among the first to use anything new.
Entertain Us are young people who want to use their mobiles to have fun.
Mid-market Moderates are middling to light users who haven’t yet found where MI matters to them
The MI Lifers are pragmatic people who use mobile internet as a tool for their daily life, gathering information, sending emails and so on.
Light and Easy are older people, often women, who rely just on mobile phones rather than more fancy devices.
Strangest of all are the Mid-market Moderates, who fall into the middle on most of the scales. They dabble in many different uses for mobile internet access but don’t seem to have found anything which is really compelling for them yet.
The research shows that these groups account for about 83% of mobile internet users while the remainder is too unusual to fit neatly into any of the defined clusters.
Each cluster accounts for about 15% of users except for the Mid-market Moderates who are only 9%.
So even now, at this early stage, mobile internet usage is not just dominated by early adopter types. The Gadget Joys are typical early adopters. They love technology and enjoy using it because it is new.
But the Road Warriors, the MI Lifers and the Entertain Us groups are using mobile internet not for its own sake but because they have found a practical purpose for it in their lives.
Two groups, the Mid-market Moderates and Light and Easy, together accounting for nearly a quarter of mobile internet users, could even be characterised as late adopters.
They happen to be making some use of the technology but they are still unsure about it and it has yet to take a firm position in their lives. Of course, these are the very people whose usage needs to be developed for the market to grow.