Second time mobile buyers prefer upgraded handsets: Study

MUMBAI: According to the IDC India Mobile Handsets Study 2005, current mobile users are willing to spend Rs 7500 on an average, while buying the next handset. The value added handset features are present in a fewer number of current handsets, but for a high proportion of handset users, some of these features are must have while buying the next handset.


The features most likely to drive up gradation of mobile handsets are integrated digital camera, FM radio and speaker phones, as per the study.

"The average amount spend on the current handset is Rs 4500; thereby an additional Rs 3000 is likely to be spent while upgrading, a good news for the mobile manufacturers," says User Research Group senior analyst Nikhil Pant.


Mobile vendors are taking care to market the upgraded handsets among niche segments. Though service cost and relevance factor play a crucial role in the buying decision, marketers are increasingly targeting the specific user segments and the results are positive.

"Most of the handset vendors are following the right communication mix by using these aspired features to sway the target audience," observes head of User Research and Communication Research in IDC India Parijat Chakraborty, . "The value added services like MMS, WAP, GPRS, Tri-band etc., have also observed growing demand, but it is yet to develop any mass appeal. According to Parijat Chakraborty, "The wide-spread hype around these services is coming down among the mass, primarily due to high service cost and low relevance. However, among specific segments, these services are exhibiting high to very high demands. The handset marketers need to focus on segmented communication approach for these niche segments."

The study also reveals some interesting facts on the handsets usage front. Average handset is used for one hour in a day for voice communication (incoming and outgoing calls). The average number of incoming calls received in a day is 12 while the average numbers of outgoing calls made are 8. It indicates the continuation of the dominance of landline-to-mobile calls vis-?-vis the other-way, as observed in previous studies as well. "The unsolicited calls from call centers for selling services and goods are also responsible for higher number of incoming calls," Parijat comments.

On the second most commonly used service, SMS, some changes were observed as compared to previous years. Average SMS users send 4 SMS in day on an average, while the number of SMS received is higher, at 6 in a day. The number of incoming SMS is high due to number of messages from Mobile service providers giving information about various downloads like ring tones and various contests. Other reason is the SMS received from Banks, Railways, and Airlines etc.

IDC Mobile Handsets Study 2005 was conducted by taking a sample of 2,245 mobile users (both GSM and CDMA) spread across A/B and C Category circles. The study covered all the four metros and 10 other major cities from A/B and C circles. Socio-Economic Class A, B and C were covered in this study.

Gurgaon-based IDC India provides technology intelligence, industry analysis and market data to builders, providers and users of IT. It is regarded as one of the industry's most comprehensive resources on worldwide IT markets, trends, products, vendors, and geographies. IDC delivers insights and advice on the future of e-business, the Internet and technology to help its clients make sound business decisions. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading Technology, Media, Research, and Event Management company.

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