The Bigger the Couch Potato, the Deeper the Wallet

Just in case you wonder if the NSA is watching you, let me clue you in on your real not-so-secret sharer.

Forget your electronic diary, your business deals and double deals, and the fifth wife you’re hiding in the apartment around the corner. Harris Interactive researchers have homed in on one of your most tender and intimate moments. And they understand you so well, they’ve coaxed you into telling all.

Harris figured out that the whole point of screwing your backside into that delicious squinchy spot on the couch — the spot from which you can both read the subtitles and reach the beer on the coffee table — is that you are settling in for a few hours of uninterrupted detachment from your real life.

You know, that real life in which real human beings call you, some good (buyer for your house), some not so good (third wife). And just as you have completely identified with that stud on the screen — whom you didn’t look like even ten years ago — just as he is boldly going where you’d like to go, the phone rings.

Is it the call you want, or the call you don’t want?

Wouldn’t it be nice if your caller’s name flashed across the TV screen, letting you if it’s worth your while to break up your happy little moment of…revery. Not necessary, not vital, not even something you’d necessarily want other people to know you’re lazy enough to use, but wouldn’t it be nice?

According to Harris’s study for Targus, it’s nice enough for two thirds of “all US adults” to tell the Harris Interactive researchers that they’d like that to happen and for half of them to say they’d like it enough to pay for it.

That’s a pretty special moment. According to Targus, about $5.00 special. So who could cash in on that moment?

The next most special moment involves the thing you think is Caller ID on your cell phone or other mobile device. Your cell rings and you look at its display: there’s your fifth wife’s name and number. You decide to let it go to voicemail and wait to hear the message until after you’ve mailed the check so your voice will have that strong ring of conviction when you tell her it’s in the mail, that same ring of conviction that worked in the fateful back seat of the car when both of your voices rang with a different emotion.

But it’s not Caller ID that’s throwing that warning up on the little display. It only shows up because said wife’s number is already programmed in your cell’s contact list. You just get a number with no name or even a restricted number notice if your cell’s contact memory doesn’t already have your caller’s information.

Harris crunched some numbers on this one, too. If nearly two thirds of Americans are couch potatos, nearly 80 percent are at least “somewhat interested” in having real Caller ID on their mobiles. And half of them would go so far as to offer cash, with the figure hovering around $4.00 for the same level of Caller ID they have on their landline phones.

Now, unlike some wireless carriers who view caller name delivery to mobile phones as an expense item with no payback in revenue, Harris is saying different. And that could be very good for TARGUSinfo.
TARGUSinfo’s Caller Name Services has telecom companies supply the full name associated with a caller’s telephone number for consistent Caller ID display on any communications device, including phones, wireless devices, PCs and TVs. It’s also amassed a repository of upward of 250 million caller name records. Therefore TARGUSinfo is pretty much alone in being able to offer a caller name solution that aims at the those very special moments Harris pinpointed.
To check the survey or TARGUSinfo’s prices and per-subscriber pricing models, go to