Press Release | December 30, 2021

CTA Study: Pandemic Underscores the Importance of Mental Wellness Technology

Arlington, VA, Dec. 30, 2021 – A new study from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)® shows the pandemic sped the trend of mental wellness technology being used to help people with mental health conditions. Over half (52%) of consumers who are living with or who have lived with a mental health condition are extremely or very likely to use health technologies in the future. Slightly more than two-thirds of the population under study (68%) who have never used mental wellness technology before are interested in utilizing it in the future. According to a 2021 study from the Pew Research Center, about a fifth of U.S. adults (21%) are experiencing high levels of psychological distress, including nearly three-in-ten (28%) among those who say the outbreak has changed their lives in “a major way.”

Executive Summary: Mental Wellness Technology Landscape

“Technology will play a crucial role in addressing the growing mental health crisis spurred by the pandemic,” said Alexis Shoemaker, senior coordinator of market research, CTA. “Our research found that many consumers aren’t aware of affordable services that could make a meaningful difference in their lives. The digital health community should do everything possible to educate the public about the benefits and accessibility of mental wellness technology during these challenging times.”

The study found awareness among those who are living with or who have lived with a mental health condition is highest for fitness tracker apps (83%), telemedicine (82%), mindfulness/meditation apps (72%) and food/nutrition apps (67%). Over half (52%) of the population under study became aware of telemedicine/virtual care visits through a recommendation from their healthcare provider.

Women in this population are more likely to be aware of mindfulness apps (75% vs. 68%) and telemedicine/virtual care visits (84% vs. 77%), whereas men are more likely to be aware of apps including sleep monitoring (55% vs. 42%), product/organization (30% vs. 21%), augmented reality (25% vs. 14%), smart or connected health (43% vs. 34%) and e-learning/gaming devices (30% vs. 19%).

Top drivers for health technologies overall include simplicity of use, ease of access and convenience. Men who are living with or who have lived with a mental health condition are more likely to be using health technologies compared to women, except augmented reality platforms, which are used equally.

Fitness tracker apps and telemedicine/virtual care visits are most likely among all health technologies to be used for one year or more. The top reason consumers in this population discontinued using food/nutrition and fitness tracker apps was that it was too much work to keep up with (36% and 35%, respectively).

CTA collaborated with Ipsos MORI – an independent market research firm – to conduct secondary research and develop a quantitative survey instrument to dive deep into consumer sentiment and perceptions on mental wellness technologies. A total of 1000 U.S. adults living with or having lived with a mental health disorder who are aware of at least one of the mental wellness technologies were sampled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to multiple sources of error, including, but not limited to, sampling error, coverage error and measurement error (margin of error = +/ 3% at 95% confidence).

Mental wellness and health will have a strong presence at the in-person CES 2022. Technology for remote patient diagnostics and monitoring, digital therapeutics, mental health, wearables and telehealth will all be on display in the show’s North Hall. Abbott CEO Robert Ford will deliver the first ever keynote address from a health company in CES history.

CES 2022 will also feature a panel specifically on mental wellness, Mental Health Innovation In Virtual Care: Stories Of Success And Opportunity. The session will explore how virtual care has been used to scale consumer demand for mental care, increase access to underserved communities and drive in innovation in the mental wellness field. Register for CES 2022 here.

Consumer Technology Association:

As North America’s largest technology trade association, CTA® is the tech sector. Our members are the world’s leading innovators – from startups to global brands – helping support more than 18 million American jobs. CTA owns and produces CES® – the most influential tech event in the world. Find us at Follow us @CTAtech.