New consumer studies by MORI conducted for Nokia indicate clear demand for interactive mobile multimedia services. The services studied - push to talk, instant messaging, content sharing, video sharing and presence - have the broadest appeal to the socially active 16-34 year olds, with push to talk having potential also for more mainstream appeal.
The studies indicate that between 33% and 43%, or a total of 90 million main mobile phone users in Great Britain, Germany, Singapore and USA consider they would be likely to use interactive mobile multimedia services - push to talk, instant messaging, video sharing, content sharing and presence - in the next two years.
These services are likely to generate an increase in monthly incremental spend, between 11% and 26% for individual services, depending on the service.
MORI conducted two studies, with the first focusing on push to talk, instant messaging, video sharing, content sharing and presence, all enabled by a technology called IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS). The study looked into the consumer perception of these services in Germany, Great Britain, Singapore and the US, and indicated a clear demand especially among the socially active 16-34 year olds. A separate study examined the consumer views on push to talk in Brazil, Germany, Great Britain and Thailand.
The studies show that drivers for adoption of mobile multimedia services vary on a service by service basis.
- For instant messaging, the benefits of the service have to do with the group communication capability and the ability of the user to relate instant messaging to short messaging (SMS) and/or the PC based equivalent.
- For push to talk, group communication possibilities and ease and speed of use were key drivers.
- Video sharing - the real time sending of video during a phone call - had a strong fun factor among respondents
- Content sharing - the transferring and sharing of files between mobile handsets - was seen as a more niche service, with likely adoption being between 10-17% in different markets. Drivers relate to use of files one might want to transfer and specifically, business applications.
- Drivers for presence - a service which allows mobile phone users to display their status to others - include practicality and potential cost savings e.g. over short messaging.
Possible barriers for service adoption also varied between the services, ranging from concerns over technical capabilities and privacy issues, and disillusionment with the quality and ease of use of services that have been rolled out over recent years.
The findings indicate that key factors in the successful launch of services have to do with consumer understanding of the service and its applications; convenience and ease of use; benefits over alternatives such as voice and SMS; and the extent to which the service can provide entertainment and enhance communications with others.
Push to talk - potential for consumer market
The study focusing on push to talk examined the drivers and barriers for service adoption among consumers in Brazil, Germany, Great Britain and Thailand. Around one in four respondents in Germany, Thailand and Great Britain, and one in two in Brazil, stated that they are extremely or very likely to use push to talk.
The main drivers were ease of use and convenience, including the ability for group communication. For group communications, respondents envisaged groups containing approximately five people on average.
The main questions related to service adoption have to do with general uncertainty about the use of any new service, tariffs and charging, and lastly, the etiquette surrounding the service use. Using push to talk combined with presence may help to allay some of the concerns about the latter.
IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) is a technology that enables a range of services for rich communication, enhanced by IP connected applications. In practice, this means mobile multimedia applications will have the added value of near real-time interactivity, and mobile users can share their browsing, filming, gaming and messaging experiences with other users in real time through the mobile network. IMS based services include instant messaging, content sharing, video sharing and interactive applications. Also push to talk will in the future run over IMS. IMS is standardized in 3GPP.