Mobile Device Adoption Skewing Mature

New research from Deloitte published Thursday may provide some clues as to where the mobile device industry is headed. If the latest data is accurate and as prescient as it appears, grandmas and grandpas will be among the fastest-growing adopters of tablets this year.

“Tablets have reached far beyond the ranks of early adopters and into the hands of older mobile adults across mature markets,” reads the report summary today on eMarketer.

July 2013 research across several mature markets found varying levels of tablet ownership among mobile phone users, ranging from just 12% in Japan to 53% in Singapore. But in most cases, a breakout of mobile users ages 55 and older were within 10 percentage points of the average rate of tablet ownership in their respective countries.

Remarkably, in nations like Japan, Finland and South Korea, tablet ownership among over-55s vs. the total population was “at or almost at parity.”

However, as today’s report confirms, tablet penetration among these older users “does not seem to be a sign of an overall increase in mobile-savviness to match the average.” As one example cited, older tablet users are more inclined than their younger counterparts to have never downloaded a mobile application.

Nonetheless, the aging population is rushing to mobile at a pace not witnessed in previous years.