E-Readers Still Beat Tablets Among the Wealthy

Ipsos Finds Fewer Than Half Own Smartphones, Big-Screen TVs

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The death of traditional media may have to wait a while, based on results of the latest Ipsos Mendelsohn survey of affluent Americans.

Even after adding the kids of affluent heads of household to the survey, Ipsos still finds some newer technologies, such as tablet computers, smart phones and flat-screen TVs still count fewer than half of the richest Americans (the 20% with incomes of $100,000 or more annually by the Ipsos defnitition) as owners.

Among the surprises:

Still only 9% of affluents own tablet computers. That's up from 2% a year ago, and another 8% plan to buy tablets this year. But e-readers, despite falling behind tablets in hype , still beat tablets by a 13% to 9% in ownership by affluents. Though only 6% of affluents plan to buy e-readers in the next year,that means e-readers will still be beating tablets among the affluent by next year. To Ispos Mendelsohn President Bob Shulman, the low overall penetration rate for tablets even among affluents, and rapid growth, mean there's still plenty of room for a new player to capture share, such as Amazon, where more than half of affluents shop monthly.

Despite ample opportunity, still only 45% of affluents own smartphones or flat-screen TVs. So there's still plenty of opportunity for marketers to sell these things to people with enough money to buy them -- and for a shakeup in market share.

While only 4% of affluents overall still use Myspace at least once in awhile, that 's twice as many as the 2% who've used a tablet computer to watch a movie.

Affluents overindex the general population in use of social media, with 59% using Facebook, according to Ipsos vs. about 52% of the general U.S. population (per ComScore monthly unique visitor data). But affluents underindex for use of Twitter (about 8%, vs. 11% for the U.S. population who visited in the past month). A much bigger 20% of affluent millennials, though, use Twitter, and 86% of affluent millennials are on Facebook.

Despite increasing use of the internet and social media, affluents, even affluent millennials, remain heavily engaged with traditional media and advertising. While affluent millenials watch a lot less local news, talk show and nature programming (indexing 74, 69 and 61 respectively), they still watch about as much as their elders overall (indexing 98 to the group). Millennials also indexed a 97 vs. the broader population for magazine readership. And they were at or above the index for the broader population in both seeing and being interested in TV ads. "Television, print and radio are still relevant for affluents," Mr. Shulman said. "What's amazing to me is how much media affluents consume."

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