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Surveys find wireless consumers hungry for information
Posted: 14-Jun-2006 [Source: MTN]

[Surveys released earlier this week studied wireless users on-line research and purchasing trends. Findings show users may be researching high-end trendy models, but free or low-cost phones are most often purchased on-line. Also on-line purchasers want more complete and easy to understand information regarding wireless plans and services. And, not surprisingly, coverage remains a top concern -- most importantly in cars, then at home and at the office.]

MTN -- New research into how customers search and decide to purchase wireless service and mobile phones has provided some interesting results.

A research group out of Reston, VA - comScore Networks(1) - looked into the purchasing behavior of consumers in the wireless phone market and found their greatest interest was in learning about "trendy" models. The top ten wireless phones being researched online during Q106 include the Motorola RAZR V3C, Palm Treo 650, Motorola E815, Palm Treo 700W, Motorola RAXR V3, Samsung A900, Motorola Pebl, Sony Ericsson Z520A, Nokia 6101/6102 and the LG C2000.

The other trend comScore researched involved the actual ordering of cell phones online. They found the models most often ordered included those that were free or at low-cost. The Sony Ericsson Z520A from Cingular topped the list as the most frequently ordered model Q106. The remaining top ten for the quarter included the Nokia 6101/6102, LG C2000, Motorola Razr V3C, Motorola RAZR V3, Nokia 6061, Samsung SGH-X497, Samsung SCH-A950, Motorola V276, and the Motorola I870.

Additional research from Consumer Action - a non-profit education and advocacy organization out of San Francisco - found that eight out of ten wireless users need more information when shopping for cell service. Consumers reported they don't like surprises around the cost and coverage area of cell phone service. In addition, 50 percent of subscribers were surprised by the amount of their first bill and 39 percent were surprised by the coverage area they actually received. Ninety percent would like an estimate of their first bill up front when they purchase wireless service.

The survey also found that the main reason users give for switching carriers is getting a better deal elsewhere followed by network coverage and network quality. Users say having coverage in their cars is most important, followed by coverage at home and at the office. When looking for a new phone, users are interested in video and camera capabilities followed by looks and affordable price.

Survey Methodology

1)This study is based on comScore's global panel of more than 2 million consumers who have given explicit permission to confidentially capture their Web-wide browsing and transaction behavior, including online purchasing and searching. The list of most frequently searched wireless phones is based on visitation to the product Web pages for specific phone models and keyword searches for particular models. comScore's list of most frequently ordered phones is based on the firm's proprietary data capture methodology that measures actual sales on cingular.com, verizonwireless.com, sprintpcs.com, nextel.com, t-mobile.com, wirefly.com, letstalk.com, and inphonic.com. Sales include phones ordered in conjunction with new contracts, renewals and upgrades. (http://www.comscore.com/)

2) The survey, conducted by International Consumer Research for Consumer Action, was conducted during March 24 - April 6, 2006 and surveyed 1,001 adults ages 18 to 49 who currently own a cell phone and subscribe to wireless service or plan to do so within the next year. The margin of error for this sample is plus or minus 3 percentage points. (http://www.consumer-action.org/)


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