netimperative.com | By Staff | 14-09-2005 01:16 PM
The mobile industry is failing to practice what it preaches, with many of those involved in the sector admitting to rarely downloading content to their mobile phone, according to new research.
The findings, from mobile payments firm Valista, quizzed over a hundred show attendees at this week's Mobile Content World.
According to Valista, a quarter (25%) of all respondents did not download content in the last month despite almost half owning 3G handsets, while 14% said they have never downloaded content.
More than half (53%) of respondents last downloaded content over a week ago.
Respondents were asked what phone they were using, and details of their content download habits as well as giving their views on the mobile content market's prospects for the next five years.
Those interviewed showed a preference for the older GSM/GPRS enabled handsets (56%) rather than the newer 3G devices, Valista said.
Ringtones remained the most popular download, with music, gaming and information such as news, sport, weather and traffic updates, all falling into second place.
Shopping for hard goods was the least popular purchase using the mobile device, the research revealed.
The majority (85%), said that the process of downloading content was easy and convenient, but 92% of the content purchased was a one-off basis and not part of an ongoing subscription model, Valista said.
Mobile Content World is a show attended by content owners, handset vendors, mobile operators and technology providers.
Raomal Perera, Valista CEO, said: "You would expect that such industry leaders attending a show like this would be downloading content on a very regular basis. The mobile content market has fantastic growth potential which has not yet been realised.”
Looking to the future, videos and music were expected to be the most popular downloads in three years time - opinions that are perhaps encouraged by the recent launch of the iPod phone from Motorola and the slow but steady increase in 3G subscribers in the Europe.
Perhaps more concerning was the fact that 26% of the industry insiders questioned thought that in three years 3G would still be "just catching on".
Those questioned in the Valista poll also expressed scepticism for the recent European i-mode launch announcements, with 53% believing that i-mode will not be a household name in five years time.
One in five (21%) of these industry players, were not even aware of the i-mode proposition now.
“A move towards greater consumer choice, competitive pricing, focusing on value for money and customer satisfaction, will lead to an increase in the uptake of premium mobile content and services," Perera added.