Use of video communication and social media apps has skyrocketed across the world and Canada is no exception, says new report

Canadians’ use of technology at home has leaped by double-digit percentages amid the COVID-19 pandemic –  online video services has the biggest gain, followed by live TV, according to a new study released Tuesday by the Consumer Technology Association.

“Use of video communication and social media apps has skyrocketed across the world and Canada is no exception,” said Lesley Rohrbaugh, director of research, CTA, in a news release. “As people stay at home, many are willing to try new products and services and tech is enabling them to do so. The current crisis may have long-lasting impacts on Canadians’ use of technology, with more than two in five (43 per cent) saying they anticipate continued use of these products and services once the COVID-19 outbreak has subsided.”

The survey was conducted from April 17 to 19.

The survey found that 53 per cent of people are watching streaming video content from services such as Netflix and Disney+ more often now than the previous month, and 46 per cent are watching more live TV now than previously.

It found that 17 per cent are using a new streaming service for the first time and 11 per cent are using a new streaming service that offers live TV options such as Crave and YouTube T.  In addition, 43 per cent of Canadian households are using video conferencing platforms such as Zoom and FaceTime more often now, while nearly half are using social media apps more often, added the CTA.

The survey also shows 22 per cent of Canadians are using online delivery services for household items more often during the pandemic and nearly half also say they have either used “contactless delivery” services or plan on using them in the future, it added.

Consumer sentiment about technology from the survey included:

  • 65 per cent say at-home technologies have helped them feel less isolated while quarantined at home;
  • 62 per cent now appreciate how important it is to have up-to-date technology products in their home;
  • 61 per cent agree the ability to purchase products online has been a huge convenience during the COVID-19 crisis; and
  • 58 per cent indicate their use of online services has increased greatly as a result of being at home.

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