Recent active participation of three telecommunications majors – Airtel, Reliance Jio and Vodafone – can match the enthusiasm of mobile users in India for technology. According to the results of Ookla’s consumer survey conducted among smartphone users aged 18 and over, across urban and rural areas of India, 89% of respondents expressed interest. to upgrading to 5G connectivity.
Of these, 48% of respondents plan to upgrade to 5G as soon as it becomes available in their area, even if switching service providers is required. 20% of respondents will wait for their service providers to upgrade to 5G networks. 14% of respondents plan to use the services after upgrading to a 5G-enabled handset, and 7% will wait for their current contract term to end. Those unsure about the new technology will likely wait and see how compelling it is when others start using it. Only 2% say they have no intention of upgrading to 5G.
What Indian consumers expect from 5G rollout according to Ookla survey
*Consumers have a need for video streaming and gaming: The survey found that if mobile internet connections were better, 70% of respondents would increase their use of video streaming, while 68% said they will enhance mobile gaming. Operators have captured a total of 44,960 MHz of spectrum in the 26 GHz spectrum band (mmWave), which due to its high throughput is particularly useful for streaming and gaming. It will also lend extra capacity in dense areas like stadiums.
* Consumers want faster speed: 42% of respondents believe that faster speed will improve most of the services currently offered to them. The good news is that keeping operators’ spectrum in the C-band will help them do just that. Both Airtel and Jio used C-band spectrum at the auction, capturing spectrum in all 22 telecom circles, while Vodafone only obtained spectrum in its preferred circles. Having access to contiguous spectrum helps achieve faster, lower latency and greener 5G services. In addition to faster speeds, 24% of respondents wanted a more reliable connection, while 21% wanted better indoor coverage. However, only 1 in 10 respondents cited better outdoor coverage as the most beneficial factor.
* Delaying India’s 5G auction has resulted in a number of benefits: Namely, a reduction in the cost of 5G hardware as the technology and vendor ecosystem continues to grow. After the spectrum auction, Bharti Airtel signed a contract with Ericsson, Nokia, and Samsung will launch 5G service in August 2022. The move of Indian operators to adopt Open RAN will make network costs even lower. Another key factor is the 5G device ecosystem, with 5G smartphone prices falling since the technology’s launch. . According to the Survey, almost half of the respondents have a 5G phone ready.
What could affect the adoption of 5G
Cost, lack of education and 5G phones are the main obstacles to 5G adoption. As with any new technology, there will be a number of challenges that must be addressed, which are affordability, coverage, and consumer education. Ookla’s survey results show that the main reason for not upgrading to 5G is the perceived cost of the 5G tariff. Just over a quarter of those who don’t plan to upgrade say they think 5G rates will be too expensive, followed by 24% who think lack of 5G knowledge is a problem and 23% don’t have a phone capable of 5G. Only 1.4% of total respondents are satisfied with existing network performance and will not upgrade to 5G.