You Rang? Report finds 'Generation D' British Columbians expect apps to act as butlers

Nearly half of Canadians believe mobile communication will replace most physical interactions

British Columbians more likely than any other Canadian to forego alcohol, sports, coffee, their car, their pet or even their best friend in exchange for always-on internet access 

VANCOUVER, Dec. 27, 2013 /CNW/ - British Columbians are not only embracing the technology that keeps them connected, they clearly depend on it. Almost everyone in the province (81%), who owns a smartphone say they are attached to their devices. And, it's not just smartphones, tablets and computers keeping them connected - Canadians are already heavy users of accessories and customized apps, and expect technology to be even more integrated into their lives within the next five years.

According to the latest Rogers Innovation Report, commissioned by Rogers Communications and conducted by Harris-Decima, Canadians are optimistic about the future; from virtual butlers to communicating with pets, they envision a world where technology will unleash a connected reality beyond one's imagination. Nearly half (40%) of British Columbians believe virtual communication will replace face-to-face interactions and half (50%) expect to converse exclusively through text, social media and email in the next five years.

"Enhanced networks are leading to a rise in internet usage in Canada, creating 'Generation D' - a group that lives and breathes life online and that shares an optimistic view of what's next," said Raj Doshi, senior vice-president, products, Rogers Communications. "Over the next few years, technology will continue to shift into high gear, offering consumers completely personalized connected experiences anytime, anywhere."

Canadians are becoming a Device Generation or 'Generation D'. Today, the majority (52%) owns a smartphone and they're not letting go, spending an average of seventy per cent of the day with their phone within reaching distance. Over half (56%) of smartphone users in B.C. admit to checking their devices at least once during a date and forty-one per cent check their mobiles before brushing their teeth in the morning. Social media on smartphones reached new heights this year, with a quarter (25%) of Canadians admitting to Tweeting or Facebooking someone while in the same room; not surprisingly, over half (52%) of Gen Y tapped into this trend. Canadians also had quite the 'app-etite' in 2013; their smartphones and tablets included a buffet of twenty-five apps on average. Some of the most popular apps were Snapchat for Gen Y (46%) and Facebook (74%) for the majority of Canadians.

Looking ahead, Canadians envision an increasingly virtual reality, powered by tailored apps and faster networks. From connected closets to cars, virtual wallets and interactive TV, here is a snapshot of what Canadians' expect in the future: 

  • Connected concierge: Over four-in-ten (41%) British Columbians expect apps to become their butler, to draw baths, cut the lawn, vacuum and even do their laundry.
  • An app a day could keep the doctor away:  Over half (52%) of British Columbians, believe apps will connect them to physicians and thirty-one per cent think apps will even predict life threatening health issues.
  • Mind e-reader: A quarter (25%) of British Columbians expect their devices to read their mood and help them communicate with their pets.
  • Steer clear: A majority of British Columbians (80%) believe that cars will anticipate accidents and provide weather alerts.
  • Cut the plastic and tap into purchases: British Columbians lead the way for future mobile payment App usage - almost six-in-ten device users (55%) expect to use mobile payment apps more often over the next 12 months.
  • Choose your own adventure: Almost half (49%) of Canadian TV viewers will take to social media to alter a show's plot by voting in real-time.
  • Character copycat: Today we love Don Draper, and tomorrow we'll look like him. The majority of Canadians (64%) believe they will eventually purchase products directly from live programming.

Canadians are a step ahead, envisioning the possibilities that gadgets and apps could bring to the future. While, forty-eight per cent need to play catch-up and get on-board with smartphone technology, 'Generation D' already anticipates the smartphone of 2019 that includes retina scanners (53%), built in projectors (25%), augmented reality (46%) and 3D screens (33%). Continuing with the connected trend, one quarter (25%) of Canadians see themselves sporting at least two connected accessories within the next five years. 

For a summary of the key findings, click here or check out the "Generation D is Here" video.

About the Survey
An online survey was conducted by Harris/Decima among a national sample of n=1,009 Canadian panelists, aged 16+ who own either a smartphone or tablet device for personal use.  The survey was administered in both English and French between November 21st and December 2nd, 2013.  The data is weighted to replicate the actual population distribution by age, gender and region according to the 2011 Census.

About Rogers Communications
Rogers is a diversified Canadian communications and media company. We are Canada's largest provider of wireless voice and data communications services and one of Canada's leading providers of cable television, high speed internet and telephony services. Through Rogers Media we are engaged in radio and television broadcasting, televised shopping, sports entertainment, magazines and trade publications, and digital media. We are publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX: RCI.A and RCI.B) and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: RCI). For further information about the Rogers group of companies, please visit www.rogers.com.

SOURCE Rogers Communications Inc.

For further information:

Luiza Staniec
Rogers Communications
514-734-6681
luiza.staniec@rci.rogers.com