A recent study commissioned by Parade magazine and conducted by analyst firm The Yankee Group has pinpointed one of the most tragic ills of society: when it comes to electronic entertainment devices, Americans are confused.

For example, the study found that 16 per cent of consumers think they own a digital video recorder, or DVR — but only four per cent actually do. Seventy-one per cent said they understand and could explain the concept of a DVR to a friend; at the same time, 36 per cent said they understand and could explain the concept of a TiVo to a friend, failing to realize that a TiVo is a DVR.

The study also found that few consumers grasp the latest advancements in technology and the brands that offer these features. For example, 76 per cent have never heard of Wi-Fi and 79 per cent have never heard of Centrino, yet 33 per cent said that “wireless networking” is an important feature in purchasing their next computer.

Further, 89 per cent said they worry about computer viruses, but 65 per cent have never heard of Symantec; 55 per cent have never heard of or don’t know what megapixels are, yet 78 per cent say photo quality is the number one most important feature in choosing a new digital camera.

“The real finding here is that … consumers have a ton of choices and not too much information about those choices, which leads to what we call digital confusion,” said Parade general manager Lamar Graham in a statement.



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