New research shows that differentiating in the consumer cellular arena matter of speed, and having the latest and greatest phones in stock…
Price is everything when it comes to competing in the telecoms market – or so we’re told. Consumers, the conventional thinking goes, will even sacrifice service quality for lower prices. While this may be true in the lower ends of the market, new research from Accenture suggests that the speed of mobile data may be a more important consideration – and in South Africa you have to have the latest and greatest smartphones available.
In a survey of around 31 000 consumers in 26 countries, the research found that the speed of mobile Internet connections was most often cited by consumers as the top differentiator for service providers.
A massive 97% of respondents cited speed as important. Unsurprisingly, 78% said there is room for improvement on their current network of choice. What should really get the Vodacoms and MTNs of the world paying attention, however, is that two-thirds of consumers surveyed said they would pay additional monthly fees for mobile Internet services that are faster than what they currently have.
South Africa was somewhat of an outlier compared to other emerging markets surveyed, however. South African users were shown to be a little less inclined towards accepting extra cost for faster internet, but also displayed a general satisfaction with their current situation in this regard.
South Africans also said that the devices on offer from their mobile networks was important. 46% of Vodacom customers, 45% of MTN customers and 48% of Cell C customers said that the mobile devices and operating systems on offer from their service provider is key.
The research also looked at mobile transactions and shows that 49% of consumers buy tickets for cinemas, theatres and other entertainment on the their mobile phones, 46% on other consumer goods and 38% on tickets for transport.
For underdogs the war has to go beyond price. Having the latest phone products available – and networks built for broadband – is essential.