Mobile broadband used by 1 in 3 over-55s

Older Brits are switching on to mobile broadband technology, with research revealing almost a third of the UK's over-55s own a smartphone.

Mobile technology is no longer the domain of the young. Over a quarter of the UK's older people now have a smartphone, according to Mintel, the market research company.

In fact, 29% of British 'silver surfers' have a handset with mobile broadband, although 70% said they mainly use their mobile to make calls and send messages.

Paul Davies, Mintel's senior technology analyst, said: "It's clear that the over-55s are keen to keep up with the nation's younger consumers when it comes to technology.

"Gradually more and more seniors are becoming regular internet users, connecting from a range of mobile and in-home devices. While brands may not see seniors as their most profitable group, products and messages tailored towards this sector could be highly rewarding."

Overall, the research found that 25% of over-55s spend more on technology nowadays than they "ever have" in their lifetime.

While 39% admit that younger people help educate them about mobile broadband gadgetry, a tech-savvy 15% are determined not to be outsmarted, claiming to "know just as much" about modern technology as younger generations of their family.

One in 10 older Brits said they are usually the first in their family to own a new gadget, while 6% think they rely on technology more than their kids or grandchildren.

Are you a 'silver surfer' with a smartphone? Let us know in the comments section below.

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