For many the release of the new iPhone 5 in September 2012 was less than expected. Just an incremental technology update. That however, did not stop a crowd of people to camp outside Apple stores all over the world. For days they would sleep on the street to get their hands on the new device just few days before the rest of the crowd. To many, the iPhone is new technology. The latest stuff we can buy. While a new release will generate press and attention for a while, maybe something else is more important. Like what is the impact of technology like the iPhone? How do people change their behaviour with a powerful computer like that in their hands? How will their habits change? And as more and more people have smartphones how will society change?
Change of consumer behaviour is very much the topic of my New Technology course at Reykjavík University. Student Eva Berglind Magnúsdóttir wrote for the course, a paper titled New Technology, New Behavior, where she addresses how technology can change the way people behave. This excerpt is from the introduction:
How does this technology and access to it change our behavior? Do we adapt differently to new technology according to our age or gender? I will therefore emphasize on the adaption of technology between generations and genders and what technology is out there that has led to the checking habit.
New technology definitely generates new behavior and that is what will be revealed in this paper. Several studies on the matter, which have been conducted in the past, will be cited. Unfortunately most of them were conducted approximately ten years ago but I believe they paint a good picture on the subject. I will start by explaining the general term technology. After that I will explain the difference in the adaption between generations and differences in adaption between genders. I will then focus on the technology that I believe has changed the human behavior most over the recent years and the devices associated with that technology. I will then focus on how associations of this technology have had an impact. In which I will discuss, among other things, how communication online can possibly affect people and I will end by defining the checking habit.
The paper can be found here: New Technology New Behavior