Fear of huge bills prevents mobile-internet takeup

Fear of huge bills prevents mobile-internet takeup

Summary: The Mobile Data Association has warned that operators need to address consumers' concerns in order to accelerate the growth of mobile-internet use

TOPICS: Networking

Mobile internet is in need of a boost from operators if it is to take off in the UK, where consumer fears of massive bills is hampering adoption.

That's according to the Mobile Data Association (MDA), whose latest mobile trends report has found mobile internet has grown by 25 percent in the past two years.

But MDA chairman, Steve Reynolds, said mobile operators need to address a number of issues in order to accelerate the growth of mobile internet use.

He said there needs to be "greater price transparency on the costs associated with using the mobile internet".

He explained that many consumers are confused and concerned about costs of using mobile internet, and so are holding back as a result.

Once these issues have been addressed, the MDA predicts mobile internet will become a true rival to desktop internet access with a 20 percent growth expected in 2009.

The research also found that 1.4 billion SMS messages are sent in the UK per week with a 30 percent increase expected during 2008.

Reynolds said: "Text messaging has been without question one of the great success stories of the mobile age both for the industry and consumer."

But he added that other services — such as IM or mobile email — could compete if mobile operators encourage adoption by simplifying setup and access.

The MDA suggests mobile data usage will continue to grow as mobile operators offer increasingly inclusive tariffs combined with lower roaming charges.

Topic: Networking

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  • In the USA...

    What I really would like to be able to do is what is possible State side; especially to be able to keep SWMBO happy knowing I am safe where I am.

    Not even available here in UK as far as I can find; sure if it is it's tucked away somewhere very specialised and it will be a lot more expensive even than the access now possible.

    Oh, it's being able to stream back video from my car/narrow boat as may be seen in Camstreams.

  • Mobile broadband - the perfect answer

    The problem with taking up mobile broadband is, to me, the cost and inflexibility of the mobile network operators. At home I have a "package" at a very reasonable price and it would be a retrograde and financially stupid step to abandon it for mobile services. I want mobile broadband on occasions, days, weeks, etc, when away from my home, I certainly do not want a year or 18 month contract that would largely duplicate my wired service.
    A true PAYGo offering with no rental charge and no minimum spend at a very convincing rate would see me take it up for my travels.
    When the mobile operators can offer the same product package at the same or better price (they do not have a wired network to maintain!!) then I would most certainly be tempted to switch from wire to wireless.
  • Mobile data rates too high

    I couldn't agree with you more. The mobile networks are ripping us off with their data transfer rates. Much as I would likje to use my phone for e-mail and browsing I will not use those facilities until the cost reduces substantially.