Millions want mobile internet services

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Millions want mobile internet services

The mobile internet will never hit the mainstream unless mobile network operators and device suppliers can “cross the marketing chasm” necessary to attract consumers, experts warned today.

According to new research from and YouGov, there are millions of potential customers who are keen to use the mobile internet if the prices and service options are right.

“Just as with mobile phones and the early years of the internet, the early adopters of internet on the move are young male technology enthusiasts,” said Tim Johnson, chief analyst at Point Topic.

Point Topic estimates that 57 percent of mobile internet users today are under 35 years old and they are much more likely to come from the more affluent social groups.

But the range of people who say they are interested in using mobile internet in future is much more evenly spread by gender, age group, social group and income.

While current usage is dominated by work-related applications, the new users are much more interested in entertainment and keeping in touch with their friends. Marketing needs to change to reach this much wider group with the promise of meeting their different needs and wants.

Prices and devices have to be right as well. The marketing “chasm” was first identified by Geoffrey Moore in his 1991 book “Crossing the Chasm”.

It refers to the difficult transition in the life-cycle of technology products where the marketing approach has to change to cross the gap between the early adopters and enthusiasts who are looking for performance and the pragmatic “early majority” customers who want convenience and practical solutions.

“I think it’s fascinating to see this actually going on right now as far as mobile internet is concerned,” said Point Topic’s Johnson.

“Our survey shows there is a big potential market out there, but the vendors and operators need a new approach to take advantage of it. At least they’re trying – look at Vodafone’s campaign ‘The internet is now mobile’ for example.”
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