Technology has infiltrated our daily lives and we have learnt to accept it and grown to trust it. In a world where people crave connections and instant gratification, our ridiculous demands are busy driving technology innovation trends.
The latest stats reveal significant increases in internet and social media usage which calls for increased vigilance on the part of parents to secure the cyber safety of our children. Consider this:
• According to current stats, there are 2 million more internet users in South Africa now than this time last year.
• Those new internet users are also new active social media users.
• The largest growth in social media use has been on mobile devices. Up 30%.
• 28.66 million or 52% of the population are internet users.
• There are 15 million active social media users – up 15% year on year.
• There are 79.91 million mobile subscriptions – 145% of the population.
• Internet use via mobile devices takes up 3h03m of each day.
• Social media via devices accounts for 2h54m of any given day – that’s more than the 2h17m spent watching TV.
It certainly makes you wonder when people get to make real live connections with others. It also alludes to growing opportunities for outside influencers (advertisers) and cyber stalkers.
A good example of how the internet has won our trust is the advent of UBER and ZUM. ZUM is the on-demand car trip service that caters for children and UBER is now carpooling – complete strangers now use the UBER POOL ride sharing service.
According to wearesocial.com, the latest trends include:
• Facilitating intimacy. A number of new innovations are on the way including Pillowtalk, a wristband that allows long-distance lovers to fall asleep to the sound of each other’s heartbeat.
• Helpful voyeurs. Reality TV started it and now it’s become more acceptable for people to be interested in the lives of others. Nattr, Boompi and Crowdpilot all work by crowdsourcing opinions on personal matters. Nattr allows users to get advice for witty texts to send to potential dates; Boompi specifically allows women to invite girlfriends to comment on conversations with date matches and Crowdpilot actually allows a group of friends to listen to your phone conversations and then offer advice.
Our advice – enjoy the technology but be vigilant. Limit internet usage times at work and at home to enjoy real life connections which in the end are those that really matter.