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Consumer Expectations Driving Demand - Consumer Communication Services Preferences Survey

Executive Summary

External factors are always a consideration when gauging the enthusiasm with which consumers purchase communication services. The US government, for example, measures consumer confidence, and uses it as a metric to predict economic trends. Stratecast does something similar, but since consumer confidence generally does not do a good job of predicting the consumption of service offerings, especially communication service offerings, we took a different approach.

In the case of Stratecast consumer surveys, we ask whether the economy will have an impact in the coming year on consumption of communication services. In the last two surveys, consumers indicated that they expect the economy to stay pretty much the same in the coming year, and they indicated that their view on economic outlook would influence their spending. Based on the service revenue trends, their stated proclivities seem to have been on the mark: network operator revenues have risen, and the number of subscriptions for cutting edge services, such as wireless and Internet access, has increased.

This year, consumers are a little more anxious about future economic prospects, and expect the upcoming US elections to impact the economy. Additionally, a proportionally high percentage of those responding expect to vote in the general election; denoting a high level of engagement. However, this does not indicate that consumer communication service preferences have remained static: as in previous years, the trend is away from dedicated network subscriptions, such as voice and video, to pure access services such as Internet and wireless. Stratecast has found that consumer surveys are a reliable harbinger of future buying habits.
This year’s survey indicates that consumers will increasingly migrate to over the top (OTT) services. For network operators, they need to accelerate their delivery and marketing of compelling OTT service offerings to better align with where consumer preferences are heading.

Table Of Contents

Consumer Expectations Driving Demand - Consumer Communication Services Preferences Survey 
Table of Contents
Executive Summary 5
Introduction 6
Great Expectations and Demand 7
Broadband Driving Expectations 8
Mobility Increasing12
The Impact of Externalities: Predicting the Future14
Guidance for Operators16
Demographics19
The Last Word 20

List of Figures

Figure 1: Consumer Service Preferences (North America, 2012-2015) 7
Figure 2: Bundle Service Selection (North America, 2015) 8
Figure 3: Broadband Speed (North America, 2015) 9
Figure 4: Increase Broadband Speed (North America, 2015) 9
Figure 5: Internet Satisfaction (North America, 2015) 10
Figure 6: Survey Respondents who Watch Streaming Video (North America, 2015) 10
Figure 7: Reasons for Watching Streaming Video (North America, 2015) 11
Figure 8: Primary Location for Watching Streaming Video (North America, 2015) 11
Figure 9: Communication Service Subscriptions (North America, 2015) 12
Figure 10: Importance of Wireless Features (North America, 2015) 13
Figure 11: Smartphone Use (North America, 2015) 13
Figure 12: Impact of the Economy (North America, 2015) 14
Figure 13: Likelihood of Voting (United States, 2015) 15
Figure 14: Will the election impact the economy? (United States, 2015) 15
Figure 15: Impact of Economy on Communication Spending (North America, 2015) 16
Figure 16: Willingness to Buy an OTT Service Package (North America, 2015) 17
Figure 17: Use of Network Operator Maintenance (North America, 2015) 18
Figure 18: Reasons for not Using Operator Maintenance (North America, 2015) 18
Figure 19: Survey Demographics 19

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