Wireless Subscribers: 50% Use Text Messaging; 17% Subscribe to Internet

Consumers are growing ever more attached to their cell phones, with 14% reporting that they no longer subscribe to landline phone service, and 33% strongly agreeing they “feel lost” without their cell phone, according to a comScore report on the behavior and attitudes of wireless phone subscribers. 

The report is based on a survey of U.S. consumers who use a wireless phone and analyzes consumers’ satisfaction with wireless carriers, carrier switching behavior and usage of wireless features that go beyond voice communication, including wireless Internet. 

According to the study:

  • 6% of respondents who were highly satisfied with their carriers stated that they were likely to switch carriers at the end of their contract.  

  • 76% of respondents who were highly dissatisfied with their carrier were likely to switch.

  • 44% of the highly dissatisfied respondents were very likely to switch carriers prior to the end of their contract, signifying that the deterrent effect of penalty fees only goes so far. 

  • 88% of those who were highly satisfied indicated a high probability to recommend their current carrier to a close friend or family member.   

“Better Coverage” Primary Reason for Switching Cellular Carriers:

Switching to one’s current cellular provider was most often prompted by a desire for improved network coverage:

  • 27% of respondents said “better coverage” as their primary reason for switching.  

  • 14% of all subscriber groups said “lower prices” as reason for swapping plans

  • 13% switching to a friend/family members’ carrier as the reason for carrier switch. 

Wireless Users Expanding Beyond Voice Communication

Today’s wireless users are evolving their use of their cell phones beyond mere verbal communication, with many now subscribing to services that enable alternate forms of communication.   

Percent of Wireless Users Subscribing to Stated Services October 25, 2006 – November 1, 2006
Source:  comScore Networks Wireless Report

Feature

Percent of Users

Text Messaging

50%

E-mail

30%

Instant Messaging

22%

Multimedia Messaging

15%

Consumers Access the Internet from Cell Phones for Timely Information

Increasing numbers of wireless phones and plans offer Internet access, which provides consumers with rich content and increased functionality.  Most new cell phones are now pre-enabled for Internet access, with:

  • 63% of respondents reporting that their phone came with this option. 
  • Only 17% currently subscribe to the service, indicating significant growth potential. 

Among consumers who access the Internet via their phones, the leading reasons for doing so are clearly related to a desire to stay connected and receive timely information.  

Top Reasons for Accessing the Internet from a Wireless Phone (Among those who subscribe to Wireless Internet Option)
October 25, 2006 – November 1, 2006

Source:  comScore Networks Wireless Report

Feature

Percent of Users

E-mail

44%

Ring Tone Downloads

35%

Weather

34%

News

29%

Sports

25%

Local Search (i.e. YP)

24%

Game Downloads

21%

Travel Information

19%

Wallpaper Downloads

16%

Directory Assistance

15%

Financial Information

10%

Pay Bills

10%

Shopping

6%

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