South Africa leads world in demand for constant connectivity

1129055810 f1ac1051ea zSouth Africans with Internet connections lead the world in expectations for constant connection both at and away from home, with 95 per cent of respondents saying they expect it and it is important to them

TIt is revealed in a study titled ARRIS International plc Connectivity and Entertainment Index (CEI) conducted by ARRIS, a telecoms equipment maker.

For South Africans, constant connectivity means being reachable 24/7 (63 per cent), having a seamless experience (defined as fast, reliable and uninterrupted) (56 per cent) and providing information anywhere, at any time (61 per cent).

A majority of households with Internet access (56 per cent) are willing to pay more for access to new experiences that offer constant connections.

As per the finding, 51 per cent said they want an equivalent content experience (and 77 per cent said they wanted an equivalent quality of connection) away from home as they have while inside.

Duncan Potter, senior vice-president of global marketing for ARRIS, said, "This demand for constant connection away from home has appeared quickly. All of this has huge implications for providers and even enterprises as they cater to more demanding workforces. Other global markets are showing us that pent-up demand will likely grow as younger consumers continue to enter the market."

A broad definition of entertainment was also revealed by respondents. A full 86 per cent said entertainment was ‘more than just a screen’, pointing to new experiences and opportunities that should be available in any format, anywhere and anytime.

Throughout the survey, security and privacy gained importance and emerge as a driving force in technology purchase plans with 74 per cent of respondents cited security and/or privacy as their top concern about constant connectivity.

In a first, security (55 per cent) and privacy (50 per cent) dominated the top five factors influencing the selection of entertainment and broadband service providers.

Speed (51 per cent) and reliability (51 per cent) tied for second place, with cost (49 per cent) and ease of use (45 per cent).

Security also appeared in the top three priorities for Wi-Fi devices, knocking off perennials ease of connection (51 per cent) and low pricing (46 per cent). Speed (86 per cent) and strength of the signal (75 per cent) maintained their leads.

The survey found that installations of home security systems could double: 27 per cent of homes currently have one, with 33 per cent of respondents saying they plan to install one.

Security and privacy also loomed large in the appetite for managed video. A full 72 per cent said they would prefer to manage their device options themselves, with 51 per cent citing security and 64 per cent citing privacy as the main reason.

South Africans with connections will double their use of paid streaming services, according to the survey. While 31 per cent currently subscribes to a streaming service, 34 per cent indicated that they intend to use or subscribe to a future service. The migration for streaming services was 13 per cent; with the main reason for the termination (63 per cent) being that the service was too expensive.

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