Assurant monitors connected technology trends around the world to evaluate buyer needs and identify business opportunities for technology companies, from mobile network operators to retailers and manufacturers. With technological advancements, like 5G and artificial intelligence (AI), poised to disrupt consumer buying behaviour, the importance of these insights continues to grow. In Assurant’s Connected Decade research study, we surveyed participants in the United States, Canada, Brazil, Japan, the United Kingdom and Germany. who represent consumer attitudes and shifts across the Americas, Asia Pacific, Latin America and Europe.

The similarities and differences uncovered outline substantial opportunity for technology companies. While consumers across all the countries surveyed own an average of seven connected products, they view the new technology in those products very differently. For example, 82% of Brazilians expect AI to have a positive impact compared to only 36% of consumers in the UK, indicating an opportunity for fostering increased awareness of the benefits that artificial intelligence could bring to consumers. Millennials and Gen Z consumers in the U.S. largely expect AI to create new employment opportunities for them over the next decade, which is likely representational of younger consumer attitudes toward technology innovations. When it comes to 5G, only 14% of Japanese and 24% of UK consumers currently expect 5G to have a big impact on their lives, compared to 74% of Brazilians.

As we think about the progress that will be enabled through technological advancements, the possibilities are almost endless. The convergence of technologies with real interoperability between smart homes, cars and mobile devices will be solidified, and enterprise applications for industry-specific advancements are expected to be significant. But adoption will vary around the world. Technology companies will need to continue tailoring product and service offerings based on local needs, establishing the right levels of support and protection that help consumers feel confident in new smart purchases.

At Assurant, we’re using these types of insights to develop consumer-focused programmes that help our partners win business in the UK and around the world, including establishing diagnostic tech support that helps consumers get the most out of the technology they’ve come to rely on;  tailoring mobile trade-in and upgrade programmes that support the adoption of 5G devices around the world; and using our global asset distribution network as well as our repair and logistics services to create a win-win-win for our customers, clients and the environment. In 2019, Assurant processed 5.4 million mobile devices across the world for repair or resale. We also recycled 1.5 million mobile devices.

In this eBook, we look at each of the six different countries included in our Connected Decade study to better understand how consumer attitudes vary across different regions. Once you’ve had a chance to take a look, I hope you’ll reach out to your Assurant contact to discuss some of the other insights we uncovered in our research and how we’re structuring programmes and offers to help technology companies gain market share and increase customer retention.

Keith Meier