Connected Intelligence is an advisory service, back by an experienced team of analysts with deep industry expertise within the consumer electronics, content and telecommunications markets. Their unique insight and unparalleled experience helps clients gain a complete understanding of the rapidly evolving Connected Consumer and related marketplace.

Key Team Members

Eddie Hold, President
John Buffone, Vice President, TV & Video
Brad Akyuz, Executive Director, Mobility
Ben Arnold, Executive Director, Home Automation

Eddie Hold,
President, Connected Intelligence

Eddie Hold is the President of The NPD Group's Connected Intelligence practice area. In this role, Eddie is responsible for managing the Connected Intelligence team, and maintaining the direction, creation and expansion of the content. He also works closely with clients to help shape their strategies within the connected ecosystem, as the market adapts to embrace convergent devices and the blurring of home and mobile strategies for device, content, and broadband access. Eddie has been analyzing the connected mobile market – phones and connected devices – since the mid 1990s, and is also an expert in the consumer adoption – and demand for – wearable technology and services.

Eddie brings more than 20 years of experience to NPD as a telecom analyst and market watcher across Europe and the U.S. He is frequently consulted by major telecom providers, content and device vendors, and the press.

Prior to joining NPD in 2010, Eddie was an executive at Current Analysis, where he launched and managed the company's global consumer analyst services, including service and device coverage. He started his career in the U.K. as the editor-in-chief for two telecom magazines owned by The Economist Newspaper Group. Additionally, Eddie helped pioneer the company's online presence, creating the world's first Internet-based, personalized magazine, known as d.Comm, and advising on the creation of The Economist Online.

Brad Akyuz,
Executive Director, Mobility

Brad Akyuz has been serving as a Director, Mobility for Connected Intelligence since late 2010. He is responsible for the development and production of various quantitative solutions for the Connected Intelligence division, focusing primarily on all products and services encompassing the mobile broadband ecosystem. As an industry analyst, he had previously been sought by major print and online publications including Wall Street Journal, Wireless Week, RCRNews,, Information Week, CMP publications and local papers including San Diego Union Tribune, Atlanta Constitution Journal and Washington Post. Most recently, he was featured as a speaker in RCR Wireless' webinar titled "The Current State of Mobile Devices".

Prior to joining the NPD Group, Brad served as a Senior Device Analyst for Current Analysis' Wireless research division for six years, focusing on the consumer device space, tracking the competitive landscape and providing analysis in pricing, promotion, and channel availability of mobile devices. Prior to this role, Brad provided qualitative and quantitative market research consulting to several companies operating in the wireless and real estate industries. In particular, he completed a full-scale perception analysis for the upcoming product line for a major wireless accessory manufacturer. Brad also served as an associate at the San Diego State University Business Consulting Program and has administrated several marketing research studies for various corporations in wireless, entertainment and finance industries. Brad holds a Masters of Science in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing degree from San Diego State University.

 John Buffone,
Vice President, TV & Video

John Buffone is a Vice President, Industry Analyst, for The NPD Group’s Connected Intelligence practice. With over 20 years of experience in the consumer research and entertainment industries, John has advised many of the largest media and consumer technology brands in the industry.

He offers his industry expertise on trends that focus on how connected devices are rapidly changing the way consumers use technology at home and on the go. As such, his research focuses on the confluence of digital content distribution and consumer electronics trends. As an industry analyst, he is regularly quoted in the press.

Prior to joining NPD’s Connected Intelligence team in 2012, John held positions as Director of Product & Client Development for NPD’s Entertainment practice. In these roles John led NPD’s home video client service team that supported the evolving digital market intelligence needs of the major movie studios and video retailers. He developed NPD’s Blu-ray Disc research portfolio, Digital Video tracking service, as well as the Home Automation and Digital Distribution Advisory services.

Ben Arnold,
Executive Director, Home Automation

Ben Arnold is the lead analyst for Connected Intelligence's home automation practice area. A veteran analyst, he has led research initiatives for technology companies for over 15 years with an eye on trends in consumer habits and usage. His work has been featured extensively in news and business outlets such as the The Wall Street Journal, CNBC, The Washington Post, and The New York Times. He regularly presents at industry events including CES, CP-Plus, and the Society for Information Display.

In addition to his tenure at NPD, Ben has held analyst positions at Consumer Technology Association (CTA) and Gannett/USA TODAY. Ben has a BA in International Relations from the University of Virginia.