Death of the desktop? Tech-savvy Brits shun desktop PCs and DVD players for smart devices

Black Friday, Gadgets, Retail


British shoppers are turning away from desktop PCs

British shoppers are shunning desktop PCs and DVD players in favour of smart televisions and smart watches, according to figures from regulator Ofcom. 

Less than a third of homes now have a desktop PC, with consumers increasingly turning to smart technology, according to a survey, released ahead of the Black Friday sales event (November 23rd).

Smart TVs, smart watches and smartphones are among the digital devices that have seen significant increases in ownership in recent years as more people need a constant connection to the internet, with internet users claiming to spend an average of 24 hours a week online, the data shows.

In contrast, MP3 players, DVD players and desktop computers seem to be falling out of fashion as smartphone use, particularly for streaming and going online, grows. Ownership of tablets and e-readers has also plateaued in recent years, suggesting they may have hit their peak.

Some 13% of households now own smart speakers and 5% have virtual reality headsets.

Another emerging trend is wearable tech, including smart watches and fitness trackers, with one in five households now using these devices and ownership doubling every year since 2016, Ofcom said.

Ian Macrae, Ofcom’s director of market intelligence, said: “As technology evolves and transforms how we live our lives, the devices we rely on are constantly changing.

“The growth in popularity of streaming services has created tremendous demand for connected TVs, which for many people are replacing DVD players, and the smartphone is replacing several other devices at once.

“The range of connected devices is expanding rapidly. Smart speakers really took off last year and along with other smart home devices will again be ones to watch this year.”

Changing tech trends


Chris Price
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