Study: Brits Don't "Get" Gadgets

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For the last couple of decades, much of the first world has become extremely dependent on technology. It has helped to structure just about everything that takes place in the modern world, with people working using technology and living with it in their day-to-day lives. However, while technology is a vital part of human development, experts believe that it could be having a detrimental effect on us.

With millions of us apparently ‘baffled by buttons, symbols and switches on devices’, there is a rather worrying trend that people are becoming overly confused by hard to understand gadgets in their everyday life. Indeed, a large percentage of those asked said that they ‘don’t have the time’ to read instructions, with around 75% saying that they felt confused by gadgets.

Indeed, just 2 in 10 admitted to being more forensic than simple trial and error when it comes to using a device or appliance. More than a third simply don’t bother looking at the other settings or options available to them.

According to Tom Guy, the Global Product Director at Centrica Hive: “Technology needn’t be scary, especially with the number of innovative smart devices out there now.

“Our research shows how modern life leaves a number of Brits without the time or patience to get to grips with their tech, but smart devices in the home like thermostats, cameras and sensors are created to make life easier and give peace of mind.”

With one third of Britons finding tech too complicating, meaning that they simply guess their way to success, another one fifth say that they simply forget whatever information they take in as they go anyway.

So, if you ever get sick of hearing an elder family member talking about their technophobia tell them they aren’t the only ones.

A Lack f Quality

Indeed, this means that Britons presently use around a quarter of their mobile phone settings and applications. Half won’t even use a device like a smart speaker for anything other than putting on music. This is a worrying lack of control over the hardware that we are paying so much money for. Even simple stuff like a thermostat or a microwave is commonly used in the wrong way, and this has become a serious problem for some time now.

Apparently a third of adults even keep their dishwasher on the same setting and cycle regardless of the needs of the wash. While 82% wish technology was easier to understand, 7 in 10 people believe that manufacturers should make their hardware easier to understand.

To be honest, from a personal point of view, that’s not very fair. Technology has become increasingly easy to use and, even a decade ago, was far more unwieldy for those without technical fluency. The most alarming statistic is that many people believe they do not have the time to read the instructions to hardware they just paid a lot of money for.

That should be more worrying than anything: that people are happy to spend so much and get so little back in return due to a lack of will to simply read. If we continue along such poor standards, we’ll never get the most out of technology. With manuals and online support being so plentiful today, a lack of desire to learn simply cannot be put down to the manufacturer.

This study, though, shows a worrying trend in British life: to want everything without having to actually do any learning or effort to get there.

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