3G services largely unused: report

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by needthephone, May 9, 2008.

  1. needthephone macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    Interesting, I always thought this as Iv'e been on Three for 4 years and never made a video call or surfed the internet.

    Iphone may change this I think, but probably not.

    Wifi will be the deal maker.
     
  2. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #2
    This may be for Aussie, but i know that much of the world does use those features.

    There are plenty here in the use that surfed the web comfortably with their smart phones. Especially with Sprint and Verizon since they are the fastest and are affordable.

    I think the iPhone has changed this and will continue to do so. Many have been spoiled by the REAL web and not the mobile one. I think the biggest hurdle is going to be AT&T's rollout and coverage of 3G networks.
     
  3. Mikey B macrumors 65816

    Mikey B

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    #3
    It has been a very slow roll out of 3G coverage for AT&T. Much of the country will not be able to take advantage, though many major metropolitan areas will.
     
  4. Canoehead2 macrumors newbie

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    Jan 29, 2008
    #4
    I think that websurfing on most smartphones frankly sucks. I've used a Treo and a BBerry to surf and it is really no fun. The iPhone is the exception - the nice wide, bright screen and multitouch makes surfing on the iPhone an actual pleasure. Even over EDGE, surfing is pretty fast - 3G will rock.
     
  5. dcjr321 macrumors newbie

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    #5
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU like Mac OS X; en) AppleWebKit/420.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.0 Mobile/4A102 Safari/419.3)

    3G coverage in my area is terrible, I'm in no hurry to upgrade
     
  6. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #6
    In the USA, over half of all phones sold now have 3G capability.

    But only a half of those phone owners use 3G.

    Similar reasons: the cost or not knowing about it.
     
  7. newyorksole macrumors 68020

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    #7
    I don't know about the rest of the world but western long island and NYC are covered with 3G which is perfect for me and when the 3G iPhone comes out I WILL be taking full advantage of 3G and all features lol. I can't wait ahhh
     
  8. samiwas macrumors 65816

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    Atlanta, GA
    #8
    I think not knowing about it is a huge portion. There are many, many people out there who simply use their cell phones as phones, or just phone and email. These are people who do not care about mms, web surfing, streaming music, mobile blogging, taking photos, etc. Some of these people even own iPhones.

    I know several people who are iPhone users and don't even know what the SDK is, when it comes out, or what it will do. And these aren't old farts, these are younger people. Some people really just aren't as enthusiastic about their phone and all the crazy options.
     
  9. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #9
    What? You mean some people actually... have a LIFE?

    :D
     
  10. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #10
    Tell me about it. It actually give me hope that not every iPhone user is a crazy SDK touting fanatic that can't see past their own touch screen. Who knows, there might actually be some iPhone users that :eek: aren't too happy with EDGE and their phones. :eek:

    I know that my butt is hurting from sitting on the fence for so long, so I hope that AT&T rolls out that 3G over here in Baltimore, and I hope that Apple puts their foot in the features of the iPhone 2.0
     
  11. needthephone thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    I think we (in Australia) all know what 3G can do as wev'e had it since 2002 but it was originally touted to make video calls. But video calling on a tiny screen is worse than useless as you need the speaker on or use a headset-the former is unpractical unless you want the whole world to hear your conversation.

    As for surfing the internet yes we know they can do that too. Every time I accidentally connect to "Planet 3" I'm in a blind panic to try and turn it off. Its how much is this costing and most people I know are the same.

    Its the cost of these data services which are the factor its not used-well I don't actually know how much it costs but I'm not willing to find out as its no use to me anyway.

    I'm hoping iphone will be different as it seems to offer a better web experience.

    They seem to be having more success selling the wireless services as internet modems to connect your home laptop or PC too.
     
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #12
    The data I've seen that talks about 3G data services use globally suggests that really a tiny fraction of the global population uses it. The rates are high in Japan and (I think?) Korea, yes. But even in the UK, the reported 3G data service usage was very low. Lower than the ~10% of all Australian phone users this survey estimated (1/3 of 1/3).

    I think we have to be careful of sample biases here (assuming that everyone is like us or our friends). For instance, even by 2013, the percentage of Western European cell users using data services of any generation is predicted at only 38% (source). So it might be very easy for us to look at our five friends and note that four of them use 3G and assume that the market penetration is 80%, when it isn't.
     
  13. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

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    Feb 4, 2008
    #13
    I think you mean half of all smartphones. There's no way half of all phones have 3G. Most of them probably just have basic data services (ringtones, text messages).

    But I would guess that you're right about the other stuff. Those that have it probably don't use it as much, especially compared to how iPhone users will.

    That being said, EDGE still isn't that bad. If we had WiFi where I work, I'd have no problem with the EDGE speed.
     
  14. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #14
    No sir, I meant over half the phones sold in the U.S., smart or not. Hard to find sources now, since the news came out last Fall, but here's one. It was big news at the time.

    Apparently the RAZR led the way. It went 3G back in late 2005.
     
  15. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #15
    Yeah, pretty much everything Sprint and Verizon sell has a 3G modem. That doesn't prevent most of the phones from sucking, mind you. :p But they do have 3G. That's still a different issue, of course, than my point of how many people use data services....
     
  16. theHunter macrumors newbie

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    Jan 28, 2008
    #16
    Well if most cell purchasers are like me, I have several 3G phones but no 3G service. So yes I can see that less than a third use 3G services.
     
  17. LiveForever macrumors 6502

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    #17
    Remember the bidding frenzy for the 3G networks, how they thought they were getting a gold mine where we all would be lapping up all the stuff they would sell us (or TRY to sell us) like ringtones, games, music, TV...

    I thing most of early 3G networks would have got their fingers very burnt.

    Only apple seems to understand how to build a business with this stuff. That is the biggest difference, not just the great hardware, but the whole integrated system -this is the genius of apple (which the competitors overlook).

    It looks like apple have abandoned the exclusive network option and will make money of the app store and itunes . Apple realise that every mac and now iphone is like having millions of shops people can walk into and buy stuff from. It will be in apples interest to sell us all iphones which are outlets of itunes. Restricting it to just one chosen network can't work long term and I think the penny has dropped.

    I also think there will now be a VOIP app which will use wifi. If any network can use iphone they won't have to restrict us from doing it. Wifi telephony is the future. Maybe companies will start selling wifi time. Installing a load of wireless routers around a city must be cheaper than erecting mobile phone towers and the entry costs must be quite low?

    With 3g this will really take off.

    I think i will buy apple shares.
     
  18. samab macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 27, 2006
    #18
    58% of Verizon's subscribers have a ev-do 3G handset.

    http://telephonyonline.com/wireless/commentary/devices-data-usage-0429/

    Most Americans own a 3G phone without knowing it.
     
  19. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

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    #19
    Well as I just proved, that's obvious. I guess when you're getting charged a la carte for data like I was before, you don't really care about data. I mean I could give a rat's patoot how fast something along the lines of a RAZR is.
     
  20. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #20
    I am just commenting on EDGE, it's opinion based so don't kill me.

    EDGE SUCKS!!!

    I have never been on a device so slow in my life. This is truly where Apple made the wrong choice in service providers, but who am I. Hopefully the iPhone will go 3G and hopefully AT&T will get their butts in gear and roll out the service.

    I honestly couldn't enjoy surfing the web on the iPhone or any EDGE device if it takes forever to load the pages. Compared to 3G/EVDO EDGE is like molasses in February.

    On a different note. I think 3G will garner more use once it's in a better phone that allows more people to use it. Us power users have been spoiled by speed, and usually surf the web on a day to day basis. Combine the iPhone and 3G and Apple will have a winner. If not, and they stick with the inferior EDGE network, then the knock offs may take a few more customers that are still sitting on the fence.
     
  21. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

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    #21
    Honestly, I don't think Apple made the wrong choice in service providers at all. Keep in mind: it doesn't matter how big or small AT&T's 3G network is if the phone isn't 3G capable. They could've come out with a 3G iPhone, but they simply were not happy with the battery life at the time.

    Look at the alternatives:

    Verizon: From reports, Apple went there and didn't like the way Verizon wanted to muscle in on controlling the phone experience, much like they do with their current phone lineup. And I don't blame Apple. I used the Verizon UI. It sucks.

    Sprint: Can't retain customers if their lives depended on it. Customer service is notoriously horrible. the network, while it used to be good, has been horribly neglected. And they have no idea what direction they're going in (WiMAX, CDMA, or iDEN... or all three?)

    T-Mobile: Yeah, right. They barely got 3G last week. And the existing 2G network footprint is abysmally small. Not to mention, they cater to cstomers looking for rock-bottom prices on phones and plans... definitely not the carrier to launch a then-$599 phone on.

    All the other carriers (Alltel, US Cellular, Cricket, etc.) are Tier 2, and simply don't have the nationwide reach.

    All of the US wireless companies have their shortcomings. I think AT&T was the lesser of all evils.
     
  22. meow66meow macrumors newbie

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    Feb 2, 2008
    #22
    The reason people don't use 3G on their mobile phones is because browsing the internet on a mobile phone sucks! The iPhone changed the way people use the internet on a mobile device. If it gets 3G somewhere this year, the iPhone will change the percentage of people who use 3G as well.
     
  23. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #23
    I meant the next version. I hope the next version of the iPhone is 3G.

    As for Sprint retaining customers, I would need proof of that as well as the neglected network. They are the premier business provider, and second would be Verizon. They have the fastest networks around.

    I honestly believe that AT&T has the worst customer service of any carrier. I have my stories but the AT&T fanboys would kill me if I spoke evil against their almighty AT&T.

    As well as the other knock off phones that have caught up with the iPhone, since Apple was sitting on its butt trying to get an SDK out.

    I think the iPhone better have 3G, or the other phones on the much faster than EDGE networks will have their full browsers, and take one more key feature away from the iPhone.
     
  24. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #24
    Jobs says whatever it takes to sell. They left out 3G because it was cheaper to do so.

    If they'd gone with Verizon, the first iPhone would've had EVDO and you'd have never heard Jobs say spit about battery life.

    Fansite myths. All the reports from Apple and Verizon say quite the opposite.

    Verizon was the one who didn't like Apple's demands to be in total control of price, distribution, warranty, and app/music sales. After a year of off and on negotiations, Apple gave up and went back to ATT.

    Verizon generally leaves smartphone UIs alone. And on the WM phones from them and ATT, you can install any programs you want.
     
  25. MacsAttack macrumors 6502a

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    Scotland
    #25
    Yes. In the UK the networks thought they could gouge their customers who used 3G services. Turned out they were wrong. The idea of video calling proved to not be very compelling and web browsing sucked on the devices of the time.

    3G was really a bit of a lead ballon. Which was why not having it in the iPhone is not really that big a problem. Of course now the networks have been forced to get a bit more sane on their data pricing (thanks in part to the iPhone) so some of these services may actually become practical at last - provided the networks don't get greedy and jack the prices up again.

    3G pricing was the straw that woke up the camel-public who refused to have their backs broken with the insane charges that the networks tried to foist on them.
     

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