Analysys Mason: ‘Ultra-fast’ broadband needs better marketing

NOVEMBER 22, 2010 – According to a new report from advisory firm Analysys Mason, many European and US consumers do not think that access to ultra-fast broadband would make a difference in their online activities.

NOVEMBER 22, 2010 – According to a new report from advisory firm Analysys Mason, many European and US consumers do not think that access to ultra-fast broadband would make a difference in their online activities. This places extra pressure on service providers to articulate the consumer benefits of such services in order to stimulate take-up, the report concludes.

The report, Ultra-fast broadband: price, positioning and identifying future applications, uses analysis from Analysys Mason’s Connected Consumer survey, a study of the telecoms and media activities of 6,000 consumers across Europe and the USA. Almost 40% of respondents to the survey said that ultra-fast broadband would make no difference to their online activities. Many consumers also stated that they would not expect the availability of ultra-fast broadband to drive a significant change in the types of application they use.

“This indicates that many consumers are not aware of the new applications and experiences that would be available to them,” explains Martin Scott, senior analyst at Analysys Mason and author of the report. “Until such applications appear, service providers may wish to emphasize the positive impact that ultra-fast broadband will have on quality of experience, rather than not-yet-established ‘killer’ applications.”

The cumulative effect of an increasing number of connected devices, which provide home users with more opportunities to consume bandwidth, will add up to a peak level of demand that may not be satisfied with legacy broadband infrastructure, Analysys Mason says. Many consumers have indicated that sharing their connections with other people in the home is already having a negative impact on their quality of experience. Of the survey respondents, 20% indicated that a 100-Mbps connection would mean that they “would not suffer so much from other people in [their] home using the connection at the same time.”

“Service providers should segment the market more intelligently in order to articulate to consumers the benefits of ultra-fast broadband,” says Scott, who also leads Analysys Mason’s Fixed Broadband research program. “High access speeds will appeal to early adopters, but families are likely to be more interested in concurrency -- for example, the ability to receive HD content on multiple TV sets while others in the household simultaneously access the Internet at high speeds.”

The Connected Consumer survey comprises a series of consumer surveys in several countries, including France, Germany, Poland, Spain, the UK and the USA. Analysys Mason will continue to release analysis of its findings this year and next, covering an array of topics, including mobile broadband, pay-TV and smartphones.

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