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UK Wireless Consumers Puzzled by 3G

UK mobile users and operators are not reaping the benefits of their 3G phone service, according to a survey by Harris Interactive, which suggests that 41 percent of users are only using their 3G phone for talking and text messaging.

Some users are not even aware of their phone's 3G capabilities. This is highlighted by the 14 percent of UK adults who currently have their mobile phone service provided through 3G-only service provider '3' and who believe that their mobile phone is not 3G capable.

The survey also showed that 44 percent of 3G users felt it was not important at all that the model they chose to buy was a 3G phone and so it is perhaps not surprising that the full extent of services are not being used. However, those who do have a 3G subscription are more than twice as likely to use their mobile phone for more than talking and text messaging (59 percent compared to 24 percent of non-3G users).

"There is a danger in 3G being given away without effectively marketing 3G services to consumers,"" said Derek Eccleston, technology research director at Harris Interactive. "Service providers are seeding the market with the product and then relying on above and below the line marketing to generate momentum for key 3G services. If 3G consumers do not begin to utilize the full range of 3G services, the return on general operator investment in 3G may not be realized-and this can have a negative impact on their profitability."

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