Are tablets making us smarter?

Tablet Study

The rise of tablets has had a tremendous impact on us in a number of ways. Emerging markets have more widespread access to the Web thanks to low-cost tablets, a second screen trend is sweeping living rooms across major markets, the PC industry is in turmoil… but are tablets also making us smarter? A curious study commissioned by Next Issue Media and conducted by Wakefield Research equates knowledge of news and current events with intelligence, and it found that those who own tablets like the iPad and Android devices believe they’re more in-the-know than others.

The survey found that Americans want to be knowledgable when it comes to current events, and more than half of those polled by Wakefield like to be known as “newsie.” When it comes to tablet owners, they seem to feel they have a clear advantage over their friends.

“A majority of Americans (56 percent) believed they were more knowledgeable about current events compared to their friends – 65 percent of men and 48 percent of women felt this way,” Next Issue Media said in a press release covering the study. “Owning a tablet may be one way to boost your news-confidence. Sixty-nine percent of tablet owners felt they knew more about current events than their friends, compared to 47 percent of non-tablet owners.”

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Then, the study took a few odd turns. From the company’s release:

  • 53 percent of parents have cried when a celebrity died, versus 35 percent of adults who do not have children.
  • 42 percent of tablet owners have tried a fad diet because of something they’ve read, versus 19 percent of non-tablet owners.
  • 44 percent of people wish they had more time to indulge in learning more about food – new recipes and diet tips.
  • 44 percent of women go to magazines for fashion inspiration while 37 percent go to their friends (same percentages for tablet owners regardless of sex).

Wakefield Research polled 1,000 American adults via email in early May when conducting the study.

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