Research: More Than Half of US Broadband Households Unfamiliar With 5G

DALLAS -- New research from Parks Associates, Technology Market Assessment: 5G Network Services, finds that more than 33% of US broadband households cite some level of familiarity with 5G and over 40% of US broadband households are interested in 5G.

Technology Market Assessment: 5G Network Services examines several aspects of 5G, including the condition of the mobile market, consumer sentiments toward 5G services and products, service availability, use cases, and competition. It explores the impact of 5G on fixed broadband, wireless services, and includes a five-year forecast for 5G and other mobile data services.

"More than half of US broadband households are unfamiliar with 5G, despite aggressive marketing from mobile service providers," said Craig Leslie, Senior Research Analyst, Parks Associates. "Limited service availability is impacting consumer awareness; however, once the technology is explained to them, almost half are interested in replacing their fixed-line internet service with 5G home services."

Parks Associates predicts limited 5G availability also means that it will not replace 4G LTE or fixed services anytime soon. With spotty coverage, providers will need to run 4G in parallel with 5G services so there is "fallback" connectivity for areas lacking coverage. Providers see the need to offer 5G services, though, as their availability is a significant influencer in service provider selection, even if consumers are unwilling to pay more for 5G.

"Beyond higher speed, consumers are failing to see the value of 5G over their current subscriptions—only 13% of smartphone users are willing to pay higher subscriptions fees for 5G mobile services," Leslie said. "Operators will need to increase consumer understanding through better communicating 5G use cases and benefits in order to convince them to upgrade services."

Additional research findings:

  • 31% of US broadband households consider 5G availability to be very important when choosing a new mobile service provider.
  • 20% of US broadband households purchased a smartphone in Q1/2019, down from 40% in Q1/2016.

Parks Associates

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