HIGH COST KILL 3G APPEAL

HIGH COST AND AWKWARD PRICE PLANS KILL 3G APPEAL
Despite mobile phone providers’ best efforts to recruit 3G customers, third generation technology remains a low priority for mobile users across the globe – and cost is the overriding factor.

The annual Global Technology Insight (GTI) study by market information company TNS has identified little increase in 3G technology usage amongst consumers, who see the offer of mobile TV and surfing the net as ‘costly and unnecessary services’. 23% of people cite cost as the main obstacle to using 3G.

And the appeal is declined. 7% of those surveyed in 2005 listed 3G as a priority feature to have on future mobile phones, but in 2006 it was just 4%.
Further, although more people now have 3G phones than ever before (20% of mobile users worldwide) less than half (9%) are using their 3G capability. Mobile TV is no more popular, with only 9 of the 21% of people with mobile TV-capable phones actually using this service.
Hanis Harun, Global Director, TNS Technology, comments; ‘Given that cost is such a key obstacle to the adoption of more advanced mobile services, mobile operators must provide pricing regimes which are fixed for unlimited use, transparent and affordable.
‘We also see some acceptance towards paying by time of use for mobile music and mobile TV services, pointing towards streamed services as a possible solution.’