29 January 2008

Mobile phones mainly used for calls and texts, research shows

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Usability News reports on a new survey which shows that despite heavy investment in mobile phone development and services, the majority of UK consumers continue to use their mobile phones for calls and texts only.

The research, commissioned by mobile interaction management expert SNAPin Software, shows that as many as 60 percent of UK mobile users exclusively call and text from their mobile phones.

Amongst a third of respondents who do take advantage of their mobile phone features, the mobile camera was a top choice: 30 percent of respondents use the camera or take and send pictures to friends and family. However just 12 percent of mobile users e-mail from their mobile phone or access the Internet.

According to SNAPin Software, UK consumers are experiencing a number of issues that may be perceived as barriers to the wider adoption of mobile features and services. Based on the research results, these can be identified as services apathy, billing confusion and manual fatigue.

  • More than half of respondents (60%) are not interested in using the mobile services available on their phone.
  • Almost a third of respondents (29%) are confused about mobile operators’ billing rates and how they are being charged for additional offerings.
  • Many respondents (18%) cannot not be bothered to go through a user manual in order to learn how to use certain applications.

“Today’s mobile phones are packed with functionality, yet many mobile users only discover a mere fraction of the features and applications available,” said Robert Lewis, president and CEO, SNAPin Software. “We believe this situation is symptomatic of how mobile handset manufacturers and operators approach user education. Users need simpler and less time intensive ways of discovering their mobile phones’ potential. These need to be delivered at the right time – when users require them most”.

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