Table of Contents
Introduction and Overview
Frost & Sullivan’s research indicates that global smartphone penetration among mobile phone users will exceed 80% by 2020. As smartphones emerge as the primary device for both content consumption and content creation, the need to protect, support, manage, and optimize the overall mobile experience has become increasingly important to consumers. In order to address this market reality, leading carriers are moving from simply offering handset insurance to providing comprehensive, integrated mobile support and protection plans that include handset protection, data protection, and premium technical and application support.
This Frost & Sullivan insight will discuss the critical need for such services in the global mobile and wireless market, and demonstrate the forces driving the expansion of the traditional handset protection (i.e., phone insurance) category to comprehensive mobile support and protection solutions. It will outline the important benefits of mobile support and protection for consumers and carriers throughout the world. Moreover, the research will highlight how these services can ensure the seamless continuation of mobile subscribers’ digital lives in the event of various disruption scenarios, including but not limited to the following:
• Device damage: Accidental damage to the mobile device hardware
• Device loss and theft: Loss and theft of mobile devices
• Technical challenges: Questions related to overall use, hardware and software settings and
configurations, and malfunction
• Data loss: Loss of either user-generated content or third-party data stored on the mobile device
• Security/privacy threats: Threats related to mobile security and data privacy, such as unauthorized
access to device data or location settings
Background of Handset Protection
Mobile carriers started offering traditional handset protection as a value-added service in the early 1990s. Over time, as wireless handsets became mainstream, consumer adoption of handset protection increased rapidly. With increased competition for customers in the early 2000s, many leading carriers around the world realized the customer retention capabilities of handset protection and began marketing these services aggressively to their customer bases. More recently, the global proliferation of higher-priced smartphones that are prime targets for malfeasance such as theft or hacking has led to a surge in the awareness and popularity of expanded handset protection services.
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