Over 60 percent mobile users in India are facing network problems while accessing Internet across locations, says a study. Also Read - India to have 50 crore Internet users by 2017, 31.4 crore on mobile: IAMAI
“We have found people are facing differing mobile data issues depending upon location. About 63 percent people are facing quality and reliability issues (like voice drops, connection breaks, inconsistent speed, no availability of 3G) inside their house,” says the study across 33 major cities telecom gear maker Ericsson. Also Read - Government working towards a goal of 50 crore Internet connections by 2018: Ravi Shankar Prasad
The study was conducted between September 2014 and January 2015 covering 15,000 urban households and people aged between 15 to 75 years. This sample is estimated to represent 127 million smartphone users in urban India, said Ericsson India Head of Strategy and Marketing Ajay Gupta. He added that mobile application related issues while outdoors or commuting take long time to refresh, fail to load, session failures etc affects 68 percent of consumers. Also Read - Only 20 percent Indians have access to Internet: Study
The study shows 62 percent users in mid-size and small cities face issues of inconsistent speeds and app usage while outdoors and 63 percent have web page load time issues indoors. “People are willing to pay but there are certain barriers that are coming in way of growth of mobile broadband in the country. Network performance continues to be a challenge and is a key driver of consumer perception,” Gupta said. The study found that around one in three are now using smartphone and three among five smartphone users have subscribed to mobile broadband. He said that for those who do not use mobile broadband, affordability and digital literacy are prime obstacles to adoption and further 48 percent of those using mobile Internet on 2G or 3G are unable to perceive any difference between 2G and 3G services. “Affordability poses a major barrier to mobile broadband adoption, particularly in a market as diverse as India where hugely varied socioeconomic factors affect price sensitivity.
88 percent of Indian smartphone owners who do not use mobile broadband feel that it is too expensive,” Gupta said. According to study, 70 percent people use mobile broadband to access video and 27 percent more are willing to start accessing it but not doing at present due to barriers cost and network barrier identified in the survey. The study shows 61 percent use mobile data to access social networks, 54 percent for music and videos download and similar number of people use instant messengers, 46 percent for Internet browsing and 45 percent of emails.
“Between our survey conducted in 2013 and this one, we have found people have started making payments from their mobile phones. 36 percent people are using mobile broadband for banking services, 25 percent for bill payments and 17 percent for e-commerce,” Gupta said. He said people are willing to pay more in the range of Rs 100 to Rs 250 for better broadband speed but if network perception is improved and this provides big business opportunity for telecom operators.