Tech-savvy baby boomers are as switched on as Gen-Z according to research, with 64 per cent of those aged 55+ owning a laptop and 76 per cent owning a smartphone, in comparison to 59 per cent and 62 per cent of those aged 16-24.
Dispelling the myth of the older generation being technophobes, the research which was conducted by Cudo Ventures, the leading provider of hardware monetisation software, also found that when thinking of the wider capabilities of technology, two fifths (40 per cent) of the older generation would be interested in renting out their spare computer power and contributing to the ever-growing shared economy.
An untapped generational market, only one in ten of those aged 55+ currently contribute to the shared economy by using services such as Uber (12 per cent) and Airbnb (10 per cent) compared to 32 per cent of 16-24 year olds using Airbnb and almost half (46 per cent) taking trips via Uber.
Surprisingly, over half of those aged 55+ (53 per cent) would be interested in contributing to the shared economy further, by sharing their computer power for medical research purposes, or if it was being used for good causes such as charity work. However, already leading the way, Gen-Z are pioneers of the shared economy, with 86 per cent open to renting out their spare computer power and a staggering 89 per cent already engaging.
Whilst almost half (46 per cent) of 55+ like the environmental benefits of the sharing economy, a further 46 per cent like the convenience of the sharing economy. Whereas, over a quarter of young Brits (16-24yo) love the idea of being able to earn extra money from the sharing economy (27 per cent), and 30 per cent love the convenience of working when they want too.
Matt Hawkins, CEO of CUDOS said: “The sharing economy has matured in to an established socio-economic trend, which is fundamentally changing the way we live our lives. Our research has highlighted that there is significant room for growth and in particular with older generations. It is exciting to discover that more than half of consumers are open to renting out their spare computing capacity.”
The research found that currently half of those surveyed take part in the sharing economy. Whether that’s through renting holiday homes (28 per cent) or car sharing (28 per cent) this is only set to increase, with consumers keen to explore other items and services that can be shared and rented, such as computer power.
Hawkins continued: “With continued advances in technology, the sharing economy will continue to grow in popularity, partly because as a nation we’re becoming more environmentally aware. This economy naturally lends itself to supporting this. For example, ride-hailing apps see less people needing to spend significant amounts of money purchasing on a car and taking out insurance for themselves. With sharing economy tech platforms, consumers are enabled to earn money from their unused cars, houses etc., and consumers in need of these assets are able to rent them rather than buy them creating a fairer, more equitable and environmentally friendly world.”
However, for those that don’t participate in the shared economy, 33 per cent do not due to lack of trust and 28 per cent don’t see the benefit, highlighting a need for further education on what services are involved within the sector. Even with some respondents expressing doubts, there’s no denying the growth of businesses within sharing economy, as seen by Airbnb who experienced 30 per cent growth in the first quarter of 2019 compared to 2018.