Europeans Show Strong Interest in 3G

A significant number of Europeans are interested in 3G [define] wireless technology, and half are willing to pay for it.

Research from Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS) revealed that 42 percent of the 6,959 European mobile phone users that were interviewed across 10 countries were curious about the emerging technology, with 21 percent indicating that they would be willing to pay an additional €6 to €10 per month for some 3G services such as multimedia message service (MMS), high speed Internet and e-mail capability. Furthermore, TNS found that the majority of respondents would be willing to pay up to €330 for a 3G handset.

Of those that expressed interest in using 3G applications, 77 percent were interested in sending and receiving e-mails on their mobile phones; 77 percent were interested in using videophone handsets; 47 percent were interested in downloading music files; and 40 percent indicated they had an interest in viewing video clips.

Alain Imbert, senior research director, TNS Telecoms comments: “Our report suggests that attitudes to 3G may be changing in Europe, but that mobile providers, especially the smallest ones, will need to put much time and effort into communicating both the benefits of 3G services and their ability to provide consumers with reliable services”.

The level of interest in 3G fluctuated between the Eastern and Western European respondents — 59 percent of users in Turkey and 51 percent in Poland said that the were “interested” compared to only 34 percent in the UK or in Germany. Also, 48 percent of men are interested in 3G compared to only 36 percent of women.

Widespread adoption of 3G technology could lead the mobile payments market that Wireless World Forum (W2F)> expects to reach €55 billion by 2006 with nearly 200 million active payment users in the key markets of Japan, USA, UK and Germany.

Meanwhile, the overall value of 3G may become evident in its contribution to IT spending. According to Kinetic Information LLC, revenues from worldwide wireless enterprise interoperability will play an increasingly important role in this year’s IT spending renewal, and will grow from $9.5 billion in 2003 to over $80 billion by 2006.

Kinetic Information attributes the revenue to three segments: enterprise solutions, accounting for $18.8 billion in 2006; telecom services, accounting for $25.2 billion; and personal device solutions, accounting for $36.7 billion.

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