Long Live the King

For the better part of the 20th century, the television dominated the American home while also commanding the marketing budgets of numerous companies. Now, however, a study released by the Pew Research Center shows that this traditional American centerpiece is losing its standing as a household fixture. According to the study, only 42% of Americans now say they consider the television set to be a “necessity,” down from 52% in 2009 and 64% in 2006. Interesting, then, that flat screen TVs are on the rise as a “necessity.”

Another American standby that has dropped in importance is the landline telephone. The same Pew Research Center study shows that only 74% of American households still have landline service. Cell phones, however, are in their heyday with 82% of adults using a mobile phone. The numbers officially reflect what many have been predicting for some time: there are more cell phones in the U.S. than landline phones.

What does this mean for marketers? Will this shift budgets and strategies? Once users have fully replaced their landlines and their televisions, what does the playing field look like? Obviously, these trends vary by audience, so what do they mean for you?

About Joshua Hoffman

Joshua Hoffman is Technology Specialist at Microsoft and a frequent contributor to Research Access.

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