Early adopters play an important role in the innovation diffusion process. Over the past decades, many factors have been identified as predictors for early adoption of innovations. Less attention has been paid to the relationship between the early adoption of one generation of a specific product and the early adoption of successive product generations. This paper analyzes how early adoption of a new product generation depends on ownership, purchase experience and adoption times for previous generations of the same product. The paper develops predictive models of early adoption for four generations of video player products, based on a survey among 815 Australian consumers. The model allows the testing of various hypotheses. It is shown that previous generation variables outperform conventional socio-demographic and psychographic variables in predicting early adoption but also that the two variable types complement each other. The best predicting models include both previous generation and socio/psychographic variables. It is concluded that previous generation models have substantial merits for new product forecasting as they are more parsimonious than conventional models and the data required to estimate them is relatively easy to obtain.
van Rijnsover, F., & Oppewal, H. (2012). Predicting early adoption of successive video player generations. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 79(3), 558 - 569. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2011.08.008