A survey by thinkbroadband.com, that quizzed over 750 mobile broadband users, has found that three quarters of users are not satisfied with their mobile broadband speeds.
Altogether 76% of users said their mobile broadband is not up to expectation, while 60% felt mobile broadband coverage was poor.
Only 3% of users described coverage as ‘excellent’ and less than a third said coverage was ‘adequate’.
Thinkbroadband surveyed its users to identify the key issues facing today’s consumers when picking a mobile broadband package ahead of the launch of its new ‘thinkbroadband.com/mobile’ advice site, which extends the free impartial advice it has been offering for over nine years to fixed line broadband customers.
It found that 78% of Virgin Mobile customers used their connections at home, with Orange being the second most popular ‘at home’ provider at 60%. T-Mobile and Vodafone were the ‘most mobile’ providers with more than half of users using their connections primarily whilst ‘on the move’. This would suggest Virgin and Orange connections are more likely to be replacements for fixed line broadband services.
Sebastien Lahtinen, co-founder of thinkbroadband.com/mobile explained: “We are not only comparing the largest selection of packages and options, we wanted to make it easy to narrow down the list of packages, so we’ve implemented one click filtering which allows you to set the parameters such as contract lengths and hardware options without answering a long list of questions and without losing visibility over the full range of packages.”
The survey results illustrate the coverage problems mobile broadband users can experience, highlighting the need to check coverage in your area on the service providers’ websites prior to signing up, and avoid committing to a long term contract unless you know coverage is good.
Thinkbroadband.com recommends talking to friends, and maybe trying to borrow a ‘dongle’ from a friend to check coverage, rather than relying on coverage maps which can vary in quality.
Lahtinen commented: “Mobile broadband is still a relatively new development and it is important for consumers to understand its limitations as well as its benefits before entering into a contract. For the majority of the population, a fixed line broadband package will usually be the best option at home, but if you are a very light user who just checks emails daily and shops online from time to time, mobile broadband might be a good way to save some money, particularly if it means you don’t need a phone line either.
“Mobile broadband is a great option for business travellers as it saves money on hotel WiFi costs which can cost as much for one day as a month’s mobile broadband subscription. Although coverage may be difficult on fast moving trains, mobile broadband gives business users added flexibility to use the internet wherever they are in the country”