A survey from m-Send suggests that only 51% of 16-24 year olds and 53% of 25-34 year olds want to access the content provided by their own mobile network operator via an Internet mobile. The number rose to 76% of over 55s who’d prefer to only get their own operator’s content.
This concurs with other research that shows the younger generations want the freedom from the so-called ‘walled garden’ of content that their mobile operators present to them.
It was also noted that more people in the south, south east, midlands and Wales preferred to access web content and interact with their favourite brands over their mobile, in the same way that they do on a computer, than those in the Scotland, the north of England and the south-west.
Earlier this month Google slammed mobile operators for their ‘walled garden’ approach, but Chris Astle, MD of m-send, also puts it down to user’s lack of knowledge of what’s available: “At the moment we are in a similar situation to the early days of consumer use of the internet when most people used CompuServe as it was simple, easy to use and correctly formatted. However, users soon realised that there was much more available to them outside of this walled garden, as companies realised that it was actually very easy to create websites themselves. The result of this survey shows that at the moment the vote is split, but we firmly believe that as consumers become more aware of how easy it is to use the mobile internet, they will be demanding access beyond what is offered by their network operator. Getting the offering to those consumers right, will definitely give some companies a competitive edge.”