Price is a significant barrier to Britain’s 4G revolution, with more than half of the UK’s consumers dubbing it too expensive and 66% reluctant to splash out on the devices needed to access it.
According to a YouGov survey, almost a third (31%) was concerned with the increased cost of data. Its report said existing 4G customers spend almost £15 more per month on average.
The report could be seen as an implicit criticism of EE, the only operator to have rolled out a 4G service. Rivals O2 and Vodafone are planning to launch their propositions later on this year, with Three vowing not to charge extra for 4G.
The survey shows all operators have a task on their hands to sell next generation mobile, with one third questioned saying they ‘can’t see the point’ of 4G. Less than a quarter said they were ‘excited’ by the prospect of using super-fast mobile internet, while 35% admitted that 4G didn’t interest them.
The findings suggest a lack of consumer knowledge about the benefits of 4G. While 80% surveyed knew of 4G’s existence, almost half only had a vague idea of what it did, while 33% were completely unaware of its functionality and benefits.
Russell Feldman, technology and telecoms director at YouGov, said: ‘It presents a real challenge to operators as more of them roll out 4G to their customers. The low levels of understanding about what 4G offers indicates that networks need to be savvy when selling it to consumers – showing not just that it exists but also what it does.’
Author: Matthew Campelli