i3 - November/December 2016 - 67

By Steve Koenig

Business

M A R K E T B E AT

The Secret Lives of Consumers
Who Buy Tech Accessories

T

JEFFREY COOLIDGE/GETTY IMAGES

oday's tech accessories
do more than cover,
control, carry, connect
and charge. They add
style, features and functionality
to the consumer technology
experience. Just as consumer
tech makes our lives better,
accessories improve the "life" of
consumer tech. But with such
a diverse range of solutions
accessorizing everything
from TVs to tablets, it's important to
understand where opportunity exists and
more importantly, who's buying?
CTA produces a robust industry
forecast as part of its Consumer
Technology Sales and Forecasts report.
The latest analysis pegs the wholesale
value of the U.S. tech accessories market
at $11.3 billion - on par with 2015's value.
Smartphone accessories including
cases, chargers, headsets and other
products represent the largest segment
within the accessories arena, echoing the
overall market for tech. This is a $3.5
billion market, with cases accounting
for 42 percent of this year's value.
Headphones are another large accessories segment worth about $2.2 billion
this year with strong growth potential
stemming from Apple's decision to delete
the headphone jack from the iPhone
7. However, where TV accessories are
concerned, cables still rule. This year, CTA
expects shipment revenues from audio/
video cables to reach $360 million.
Virtual reality (VR), encompassing a
range of headsets and controllers will
be a boon to the videogame accessories
segment. Controllers and other game
accoutrements have long led the opportunity with both wired and wireless
C TA . t e c h / i 3

solutions, but VR accessories will up
the ante on opportunity here from
its current $1.2 billion market value.
Computing accessories are another
bright spot, composed mostly of cases,
carrying bags and, of course, input
devices. In addition, biometrics is also
boosting the accessibility and convenience of input devices for all.

Who Is Buying Accessories?
Ironically, while tech accessories are
ubiquitous, they are not a one size fits all
proposition. Accessories have evolved to
become the personal effects of technology.
To fully tap opportunities in the accessories market it's crucial to understand
the accessories buyer. In CTA's Consumer
Tech Accessories: Customer Segments
(Sept. 2016) study, we identify three main
customer segments for these products.
The quintessential "Tech Accessory
Consumer" makes up more than half

(53 percent) of the U.S. population and
are the most likely to buy accessories
with a specific solution in mind. Their
purchases are purpose driven. Women
make up 61 percent of this group and
half of the individuals in this segment
are age 50 or older. Just over a third are
employed full-time (36 percent) and
a quarter of this population is retired
(24 percent). This segment is also more
likely to use technology products that
others have tried.
Making up 35 percent of the U.S.
population, the "On-The-Road Family
Supporter" segment represents consumers who often use technology devices
and accessories to support their daily
routines on-the-go or traveling for
work. As a result, these consumers want
accessories to enhance their tech devices
and are keen on personalization. Men
represent 59 percent of this segment,
and nearly two in five (37 percent)
are between the ages of 30 and 39.
Eighty-two percent are employed
full-time or part-time. Nearly three
quarters (71 percent) also have children
in their household.
"Quantified Self and Home" consumers
make up nine percent of the population
and are early adopters of technologies
and the accessories that go with them.
They also value a healthy lifestyle. A
wide range of age groups are in this
segment, and three in five (58 percent)
are men. Eight in 10 (79 percent) are
employed and three in five (63 percent)
have children at home. Almost nine in
10 (85 percent) own their own home and
62 percent have a household income of
$75,000 or more. Accessories continue
to enhance consumer's experience and
enjoyment of technology.
n
Expect wireless headphones to be a major
audio theme at CES 2017.
NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2016

67


http://www.CTA.tech/research http://www.CTA.tech/research http://CTA.tech/i3

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i3 - November/December 2016

Contents
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover1
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover2
i3 - November/December 2016 - Contents
i3 - November/December 2016 - 2
i3 - November/December 2016 - 3
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i3 - November/December 2016 - 68
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover3
i3 - November/December 2016 - Cover4
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http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20160506
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20160708
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170506
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170304
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170102
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