Five times as many black women — 36%– use cell phones for three or more hours a day compared to other women, according to research by Time Inc.’s Essence magazine. Black women also spend more extended time using iPods, computers, high-definition TVs and DVD players. The findings defy an image of technology consumers focused on young men, says Carmen Bryant, director of consumer research for the magazine.
Black women use technology to gain control over their lives, but also see it as a way to express style and personality, Bryant says.
The survey found 42% of black women report spending $100 to $499 or more on cell phones compared to 26% of other women. Black women also embrace new mobile technology, with 21% of them using cell phone Web browsers to make purchases compared to 8% of other women.
Bryant says it’s important for electronics marketers to recognize these women as influential consumers. “They tend to be the primary decision makers in households, in part because two thirds of African-American households are led by women,” she says.