Consumers in developing markets where the internet tends to be slower and less reliable are more satisfied with their connections compared to the developing world, a survey has found.
Networking company Juniper has released it Global Bandwidth Index Report which explores the differences between how people use mobile Internet connectivity in their day-to-day lives across nine emerging and developed countries, including Australia, Germany, Japan, the UK and the US. It also surveyed consumers in Brazil, China, India and South Africa.
Australians ranked as the most unhappy with their internet connections out of the nine countries surveyed.
Australian consumers cited mobile data plans and connection speed as the top two reasons currently restricting them from fully utilising their mobile connectivity capabilities and they’re not suffering silently. The survey found 73% of Australians have one or more connectivity complaint and 89% aren’t completely satisfied with the speed of their current connection.
Juniper Networks Australian and New Zealand MD Nathan McGregor said customers in the western world were more sensitive to connectivity interruptions or black-spots.
“Australia had the lowest assessment of customer satisfaction and 73% of customers have one or more connectivity complaint,” McGregor said.
“There’s certainly evidence there for service providers to take note that, the better the connectivity the more sensitive customers are to interruptions in service.
“As high-speed connectivity becomes the norm across Australia, service providers will need to move quickly into application development and services personalisation to attract new customers and ensure retention.”
Overall, 60% of consumers in emerging markets cited connection speed as the most common problem compared with 27% in developed countries.
About one third of those surveyed in developing nations stated that simply finding a connection remains an issue, compared to just 13% in developed nations.
The survey also found people in developed countries used the internet for convenience while in emerging markets the technology is used for self-advancement and education.
“People in developing countries are twice as likely to use connected devices for educational purposes as those in developed markets, and more than half of consumers in emerging markets would like to have access to more educational resources in the future, compared to less than one-quarter in developed countries,” Juniper said.
In India, for example, 45% of people surveyed said connectivity had fundamentally changed how they access textbooks, complete coursework or use teaching tools, compared with 21% in Australia.
The report found 97% of people in emerging markets reported fundamental life changes as a result of internet connectivity, including significant changes in the way they complete everyday tasks, from banking to accessing information and receiving health care.
Compare that to 22% of consumers in developed markets, or 29% of consumers in Australia, who report that connectivity has not had a significant effect on their lives.
When it comes to the internet improving earning power 40% of respondents in emerging markets reported connectivity helped while just 17% in developed markets said it lifted incomes.
While 60% of consumers in emerging markets believe that connectivity has transformed their social lives, compared with 38% in the developed countries.
The full report is here.