What Does Your Device Say About You?

An analysis of mobile devices and their owners.

By on July 17, 2013

You can’t judge a book by its cover, but can you judge a person by their mobile device?

Just as purchasing a pick-up truck, mini-van or convertible may reveal clues about a person’s lifestyle, so can picking one particular operating system or type of device over another. This might give insight into that individual’s priorities when using their device, whether it is downloading the newest camera app, emailing or making calls.

Research has shown that iOS users spend more time on their smartphones than Android users, but each group uses their devices differently, according to Experian Marketing Services research. For example, Android owners spend more time making calls and less time in apps. With built-in keyboards, BlackBerry phones tend to be popular among people who are more concerned with typing emails and communicating than downloading apps and games.

Both Android and iOS tablets represent a fast growing segment of the mobile device pie. In the last 12 months, the sales of tablets increased 50 percent. According to experts, tablets are typically used more for leisure than business, and many of the new adopters are older and less tech-savvy.

Color and size can also reveal aspects of a consumer’s personality. According to color psychologists, even choosing between a black or white phone reflects an unconscious statement about what is going on in one’s head. Choosing white could indicate the user views himself as being more refined, while selecting black could reveal a more technologically-inclined user.

However, as mobile device capabilities and options continue to evolve, so do consumer’s habits and expectations. Consumers may also choose not to limit themselves to one phone; today 8 percent of smartphone owners have more than one phone and some have more than one tablet.