Poll: 47% don't think they need 4G, but Apple is likely to change that with new iPhone release

Poll: 47% don't think they need 4G, but Apple is likely to change that with new iPhone release

Summary: Results from a new Piper Jaffray poll show consumers don't think they need 4G, but I am pretty sure Apple will change all of that with the next iPhone announcement. Once you taste the speed of LTE, you don't want to go back.


I have written a few times about the 4G marketing term and how consumers just want something that performs well so I wasn't surprised to read the Piper Jaffray survey results that conclude 47 percent of consumers feel they don't need 4G and that another whopping 26 percent think they are all the same.

After using LTE on Verizon and AT&T I am fairly confident that these poll results are due to the fact that people haven't yet tasted LTE speeds like these. Once you use your smartphone or tablet with LTE it is tough to ever go back and I know that millions of people will change their mind about LTE as soon as the new iPhone launches and they see how fast everything flies. I also have HSPA+ on T-Mobile and am very happy with those speeds, but they are still about half of what I see on LTE on a daily basis (areas with 42 Mbps have great burst speeds though).

The poll indicates that marketing efforts by carriers are working too since 51 percent stated they don't know who has the best or think all networks are the same. In my experiences, Verizon is easily the top 4G carrier with the widest LTE coverage and the fastest speeds. AT&T has very few LTE markets, but their speeds are fast. Sprint only has a couple new LTE markets that are reportedly slower than the rest and their fall back CDMA network is glacial. T-Mobile's HSPA+ network is very fast and has decent coverage, but the 42 Mbps network coverage hasn't reached every location yet either.

I would like to see this poll conducted after the new iPhone and Windows Phone 8 devices launch and Sprint and T-Mobile get their LTE networks up and running because people will eventually taste the sweetness of speed and not want to give it up.

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Topics: Mobility, Apple, iPhone, Telcos, AT&T, Verizon

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  • This article title is as ridiculous as

    Poll: 47% don't think they need High-Speed Internet, but Apple is likely to change that with new imminent iWonderful&Amazing&Magical&OhSoRevolutionary release.
    • It does seem more like, forgive me, a sales pitch

      And, yes, expect "magical" to be a buzzword... which was patronizing and condescending then, and will continue to be so.

      Advertising with such mythological words... our society, if one can still call it that, continues to devolve... marketing helps determine 'value' and we put it on bamboozling people for greedy selfish gain... without customers or people slopping Apple's goodies together (see iFixit, my2011macbookpro, and other sites for more), Xerox to copycat from (while they blast Google for doing what they did all those years ago), Apple would never have gotten out of its garage...
      • more lies from HypnoToad72

        >>to copycat from (while they blast Google for doing what they did all those years ago),

        Ah, read computing history @HypnoToad72 before making false claims. Apple PAID Xerox pre-IPO stock to look at Xerox PARC's GUI. Those shares became $1 million in Apple's IPO.

        So not, it is not the same...
  • I don't need 4G, but....

    I want 4G. I was embarrassed how slow my iPhone 4 was on the Verizon network compared to my friend's 4G Andriod phone on Sprint. Definitely will be getting a new 4G phone this fall, it just won't be the new iPhone! I know it will have 4G, but there are multiple reasons that I do not like the iPhone. That is for another post.
  • False number

    Here in the US, only about half the people have smartphones at all, while worldwide it is only about 1 in 6. So, yes, I guess you could say that 47% don't feel the need for 4g when they don't even have a data plan.
    • That wouldn't surprise me...

      Now consider a so-called "cashless" society (currency is still used, but nothing is minted or printed in lieu of a computer program, likely hackable since our new normal dictates that to get it done as cheaply and as quickly as possible has more merit than taking proper amounts of time and patience to do it RIGHT), which requires one of these gizmos and with a data plan. $100 for a subsidized gizmo (at least while cell phone companies still subsidize them but since our tax money subsidizes those companies that won't be an issue, right AT&T?), plus $70/mo for data and voice...

      Now add in the $60k for a Bachelor's degree needed for a job that pays $12/hr involving 5 years+ knowledge of Visual Studio 2008 (an actual want ad from 2010 actually demanded 5 years' experience on a product that was 2 years old; somebody in HR quickly proved how uneducated Americans are, it seems...)
  • Typical

    It just means that these people do not already have LTE.
  • I've enjoyed 4G for a long time now

    47% have no clue about technologies, or somehow likes to believe, and with zero proof, that Apple invented Earth and the heavens on top of everything else...

    If Apple keeps being slow to the game they should be left behind.
  • 4G seems like a a really fast, short burst considering the new data rates

    Great I can download a couple GB really quick and then ouch! my wallet hurts
  • If you can get an unlimited data plan.

    If you can get an unlimited data plan, 4G would be great.

    If not, then frankly you'll use up your entire month in a microsecond with 4G.
  • AT&T thinks differently...

    in an article on this site, AT&T seems to be saying differently (i.e. Larry Dingman article) says Facetime over Cellular isn't that big of a deal and people will use Wifi anyway. I think it all depends upon pricing of data plans.
    Recent T-mobile data plan annoucement of "Unlimited Data" as long as the cell phone isn't used as a Hotspot, means it isn't truely unlimited.
    What REALLY needs to happen is one of the Cellular providers should introduce a 10 GB (or some other pretty high value such as 8GB, after that it throttles) unlimited plan for a really reasonable price and say that customers can do anything they want with that, but they can't run their whole house off of it.
    I don't mind using Wifiw where I can (especially at home), but there are times I want to stream audio or other things when there is no Wifi available. Streaming audio isn't going to kill most networks, streaming HIGH quality video could (especially if everyone is doing it).
    Life is about tradeoffs. They cellular company that works BEST with it's users to give them more data, at an attractive price, that has minor limitations will likely do the best.
  • wow.. 4G has been running on Android phones for well over a year...

    Get with the program Apple fan boys... Android has been doing 4G for a while on all the networks and i would hate to have to go back to 3G because its so slow. Its just like a couple of 15 years ago when people didn't see a reason to go from dialup to broadband but now everyone has broadband. Verizon is superior to the competition for speeds, customer service, and dependable network compared to the competition. The competition is so far behind in its markets that it will take years to catch up to Verizon. All i got out of this article is get Android and get Verizon if you don't want to go backwards.
    Matthew Caroffino
  • 4G vs Data Plans

    I love how all the companies are pushing 4G down our throat yet at the same time capping data use with heavier and heavier fees. Go Faster, Go Faster.. Pay More, Pay More! Pay More Faster!. Sprint's 4G flat out sucks. I had it here in Palm Beach county Florida and unless you were sitting under a bridge from i95, it simple didn't exist. 4G was available in like THE crappiest parts of town where you wouldnt or shouldn't be at night... or even the day.

    Then came the iPhone 4s and I so, I switched to that, took their 3G service and THAT too is awful. It's everywhere... but it's awful. THink dialup... but a touch slower.

    So what's left? Higher and higher fees for faster and faster capped useage. Something's gotta change.

    It's not the same scenario as back in the dial-up to cable days because cable was faster... yeah... but it wasn't capped. So it made sense to upgrade.

    There's no way in hell I'm going to stream music, play videos, download games, talk on skype, use facetime... on a 3G or 4G capped data plan...

    How can mobile use expand, if there's wall right above our head? I pay close to $180 a month for an iphone and an evo for that basic data plan and voice plan Sprint has. That's INSANE... My in house cable bill is 1/5 of that and 10 times faster. There's a serious problem here.
  • The 47%

    The 47% have never had 4G. I have a Motorola Razr with Verizon. Very, very impressive, particularly after the ICS upgrade. Now, if Verizon would expand their coverage in Central and South Texas, I could quit using my ATT stupid phone. Too many places around me Verizon doesn't have any service of any kind, so I have a Verizon smart phone and an old ATT stupid phone. The stupid phone has 2 advantages over all of the new phones. It has a jack for an external antenna and the battery stays up forever.