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Monday, October 15, 2007

Tech companies start to follow the money

Not often do you get CNET talking about technology and the 50-plus. The host of tech companies exhibiting at the recent AARP national conference prompted the publication into action.

Here are a few of the factlets/quotes that caught my eye.

"Nintendo changed our company strategy about two years ago to try to go after what we considered an expanding audience. We'll of course still market to (people) under the age of 25, but as an industry it's getting stagnant. So we set off with the DS and Wii to go after expanding from the age of 25 up to 70" (Senior vice president of marketing and corporate communications at Nintendo)

Nintendo has partnered with building firm Dell Webb to have its systems incorporated into the club houses and lounges in their over-50 communities. It's also partnered with Norwegian Cruise Lines to make Nintendo available on flat-screen TVs in the ship lounges. Now that really is interesting.

Google was present at the AARP convention, registering visitors for Gmail accounts and demonstrating how they can be customized. Microsoft was also present, giving demonstrations of Vista – poor sods. The company was also demonstrating its Xbox 360. "If you gave a new Xbox to your grandmother and grandfather and gave them the manual, they could have it set up in 10 minutes. Why do they need a DVD player and CD player and TiVo when (they've) got everything here?" (Lead software development test engineer on Microsoft's Xbox team).

At long last it seems that the youth obsessed marketing of tech companies is waking up to the reality of the ageing population. Dick Stroud

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