According to a new report from Strategy Analytics, awareness of 5G is relatively high in the US market but significant consumer confusion exists. Overcoming the confusion among flagship buyers that believe they already have 5G is an industry created problem that needs to be addressed, the report explains. The research was conducted by the User Experience Strategies (UXS) group at Strategy Analytics and assessed consumer awareness, expectations and potential adoption of 5G and found that smartphone price was overwhelmingly the biggest factor for not buying 5G to this stage.
Among the key findings of the report:
- Nearly two thirds of consumers surveyed claimed ‘Basic Familiarity’ or to be ‘Very Familiar’ with 5G, but of this nearly one fifth of consumers already thought they had 5G.
- While one in four consumers in the US listed 5G as an important feature, one in five didn’t yet see a need for 5G, or wanted to wait until the benefits of 5G were proven before purchasing this technology.
- Apple fans in the US believe they are 5G leaders despite market reality. But when asked which brand they would buy for 5G capabilities, overall consumers ranked Samsung neck and neck with Apple as the most preferred.
Christopher Dodge, Associate Director, UXS and report author commented, “Outside of Apple and Samsung, the battle for 5G will largely be in the mid-tier - smartphones with a retail price of $600 and below. A wave of new entrants for 5G from China, as well as new Nokia devices, could also be damaging to brands such as LG and Motorola, who are most at risk given their low repeat purchase intentions in the 5G era.”
Added Paul Brown, Director, UXS, “But one of the biggest challenges to overcome is ensuring consumers know what they already have – and how they will benefit from 5G in the future. Reliable connectivity and guaranteed quality are key drivers, but consumers are not prepared to pay over the odds for this technology. OEM’s must find a way to drive adoption through a demonstration of need, and by virtue of this need, fixing consumer pain-points . Brand and WOW factors alone will only go so far.”
We are at the dawn of the 5G era, both in the US as well as globally. Coverage is patchy and devices thus far are limited, but a wave of new models and broader coverage are just on the horizon. In the US, each of the major operators have rolled out coverage with great fanfare and have begun to range 5G devices in their stores. We are at the earliest phase of adoption by bleeding edge customers today.