According to data from Deloitte’s forthcoming Digital Consumer Trends 2021 report, a record 19.2 million digital devices were bought by UK consumers in the year to July 2021. This figure is more than double the number for the previous year (9.3 million).
In the ten years that Deloitte has been surveying digital device ownership in the UK, this marks the fastest-ever rise in technology adoption.
Paul Lee, global head of technology, media and telecommunications research at Deloitte, said: “Lockdowns left many households with more time to devote to devices and more savings to buy new technology. However, this is likely to have been a one-off surge in device acquisition. Device ownership is unlikely to grow as fast over the next year. While technology acquisition rates may slow, consumer dependence on technology will continue to deepen, along with demand for new functionalities and designs which is likely to continue driving device ownership across the UK.”
In a breakdown of the tech the UK consumers bought during the pandemic, wearable devices – such as smartwatches and fitness bands – saw the sharpest rise with 40% of consumers now having access to these devices, up from 31% in 2020. Meanwhile, smart speaker access rose from 29% to 35% in the past year, and smart TV ownership grew from 59% to 65%.
Smartphones (owned by 92%) and laptops (accessible to 79%) continue to be the most popular digital devices owned by UK consumers, however these figures have long-since hit a plateau.