Well, these results surprise me a little bit, especially since the consumer segment was asked but anyway, it looks like an Office suite for mobile devices is way more important for consumers than Microsoft (and others) thought so far. On the other hand, it's interesting to see which features drove the customers to buy the current mobile phone. Nevertheless, a recent research study has revealed that consumers across all age groups consider Microsoft Office to be foremost among the features they would wish to have on their mobile phones in the future. The research was carried out through ORC International's new online mobile consumer panel Ã¢â‚¬â€œ ORC OmniPanel. Findings from the study underline the growing sophistication of mobile phone users, along with consumers' evident liking for multi-function handsets and devices.
Demand for the MS Mobile office suite Ã¢â‚¬â€œ cited by 45% of the sample Ã¢â‚¬â€œ narrowly finished ahead of Mobile TV (44%), which was a firm future favorite among 16 -24 year olds. Just over one in ten consumers interviewed claim to be using these features already.
While unsurprisingly a QWERTY keyboard is required (by 39% of respondents) to bang out those E-Mails, reports and spreadsheets, the next features most in demand were radio (32%) and image manipulator/photo editor (31%).
However, when asked what factor most influenced the selection of the handset at the time of the last upgrade, the highest proportion of consumers interviewed (31%) stated that they were driven to purchase because of the overall design and style of the phone. The next most important driver was that the phone should have a camera.
Divisional manager of ORC International's telecoms practice, Neil Ferguson commented: "The findings have highlighted the challenges faced by the mobile industry in balancing the very strong purchase drivers of fashion and functionality. Handset ease of use will also continue to have a dramatic effect on ARPU. However, the research demonstrates that users will increasingly demand a higher specification OS and UI with superior application capabilities. Therefore, the challenge faced by the industry is in reconciling terminal design and functionality, with users' media requirements at affordable prices."
More than 500 consumers were interviewed via the ORC OmniPanel Ã¢â‚¬â€œ a specialist, on-going consumer insights research service. The next wave of research will take place in July 2006 and data will be based on the responses of more than 2,000 respondents.
Cheers ~ Arne