- COVID-19 has seen households embrace new tech
- Zoom increased users by 2,000% in 2020
- VPNs, gaming and streaming have seen significant growth
- Netflix saw an additional 12 million users in the UK in 2020.
For many, particularly during the colder months, there wasn’t much else to do recreationally apart from resort to technology – be this video gaming or streaming the latest TV shows online! Tech has been a major player in facilitating both recreational activities, as well as work productivity during lockdown, and has allowed businesses to continue bringing their workers together in one way or another.
This article will outline a few tech areas in particular that have seen a great soar in demand in the past year.
Content created in partnership with Tudor Lodge Consultant.
During the first lockdown, Zoom users grew by 2000%. For most, they had not even heard of the video conferencing software, it was used solely by businesses communicating with partners or clients abroad, and certainly was not associated with quizzes and escape rooms.
Video conferencing platform like Zoom, Whereby and Google Meet have been a great way of bringing workplaces and communities together, albeit in a technological form.
It has allowed companies to facilitate meetings online, as well as bring families and friends together socially when they could not meet up physically. Zoom quizzes are certainly something that had not existed until 2019, but most people are happy to say goodbye to as we approach the lifting of lockdown!
Tech PR agency, Eskenzi, also highlighted other platforms that gained huge traction in lockdown, including Slack, TikTok, Facebook and recently, business social network, Clubhouse.
Finally, streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+ saw a soar in demand. Ofcom’s annual study in 2020 found that people sent 40% of their waking hours in front of a screen, with people watching streaming services for over an hour every day.
Over 12 million people in the UK joined a streaming service that they had not used previously prior to lockdown. This study is suggestive that streaming services are an area of tech that grew majorly during lockdown.
Popular Netflix series were discussed all over social media and people wanted something to fill in the spare time that they normally would have spent out socializing with friends and family.
Virtual Private Networks are hugely important for company’s online security, especially concerning their data and privacy. VPNs prevent any private information from falling into the wrong hands, as only those within the VPN can access the server.
With the British Government advising workers across the UK to work from home where possible, the majority of office workers have set themselves up within their own homes during the working week. For many companies, this means their workers wifi is no longer within the building’s private network.
The best VPNs provide an encrypted passageway that allows data and information to be transferred. Further, files can be sent and received privately so that only those within the company’s VPN will have access.
Online gaming increased by 1.5 hours from 2019 to lockdown in 2020. An Ipsos MORI report conducted in late 2020 found that 14% of players claimed to have discovered new video games, with 30% stating that gaming helped them to feel less isolated.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought the UK into an utter halt. A national lockdown with all retail, education and hospitality sectors closed in-person. This meant people were spending more time at home than ever before, and resorted to gaming for their recreational needs.
Increasingly enough however, gaming fell once lockdown restrictions lifted in the summer of 2020, indicating that people were wanting to spend more time in-person socializing and outdoors, as opposed to being sat in front of a screen.
Daniel Tannenbaum is the founder of Tudor Lodge Consultants, working with Groupon, Savills Property and he works also as a consultant for Lord Alan Sugar.