‘Fadgets’ are out: Brits want more meaningful innovation

May 19, 2014

  • Brits want more than just the latest fad gadgets; they want innovation that makes them healthier (53%), happier (49%), and safer (48%)


Guildford, UK – A survey released today by Philips reveals Brits want more than just to get their hands on the latest gadgets, with many demanding more meaningful innovation to help improve the health (53%), mental wellbeing (49%), and safety/security (48%) of their loved ones. One in five (20%) claimed they would even be prepared to hand over their laptops (57%) or smartphones (38%) in favour of innovations that make them healthier and happier.


Innovation and You: What does ‘innovation’ mean to us? 
The survey revealed we have a healthy understanding of what innovation can do to improve our daily lives, claiming it has a positive impact on our work (88%), health and well-being (79%), society (77%) and family life (76%). With the UK population over the age of 65 set to increase to 4.1 million by 2030*, we want more innovation that will improve our lives as we get older (74%), as well as support the healthy development and education of our children (42%).


Back to the future: What innovations do we want to see in 100 years?
When asked what innovations they wanted to see in the next 100 years, the majority of Brits claimed they would most like to see a pill that cures all illnesses (65%), rather than the invention of household robots (29%), self-driving cars (34%), or ‘intelligent’ fridges (19%). When asked to name the best innovations from the last 100 years, Brits put antibiotics (72%), the internet (52%), keyhole surgery (40%) and pacemakers (33%) at the top of the list.


Independent Cyber-Psychologist, Jacqui Taylor, commented on the findings: "Surprisingly, only a quarter of respondents to the poll said smartphones were the most meaningful innovations of the last century, whilst innovations that improved their health, well-being and sense of security were the ones to top the list.


The British still love technology that keeps them connected with each other, but there is a greater demand for innovation that has a positive impact on their home and family life. They want innovations to understand and address their deeper human needs."


Respondents to the survey did see the potential benefits of using connected devices in improving healthcare (54%), education (44%), and in making British towns and cities safer (43%).


Head of Brand at Philips UK and Ireland, Wander Bruijel, commented: "Technology that keeps us connected has fundamentally changed the way we live, work and interact with one another. But as some key societal trends and challenges catch up to us – such as an ageing population, a pressure on our environment, and a desire to live more happily and healthily – it’s not surprising that we are looking for innovative solutions that address those more meaningful concerns."


Philips UK has recently launched it’s ‘innovation and you’ campaign. To see how Philips is improving people’s lives around the world visit


Share your thoughts on what innovations matter most to you on Facebook and Twitter.


Notes to Editors: 
Survey of 1,000 respondents conducted by Censuswide on behalf of Philips (May 2014)

*Report compiled by The King’s Fund, London (2014)

For more information, contact:

Wander Bruijel 
+ 44 (0) 7771 894 616


Barbara Neate
+44 (0) 7771 814 778


About Royal Philips:

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a diversified health and well-being company, focused on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips posted 2013 sales of EUR 23.3 billion and employs approximately 112,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming and oral healthcare. News from Philips is located at