Amid union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s statement that India’s 5G is indigenous; can provide to other countries, a survey conducted by the community social media platform LocalCircles said while 5% mobile subscribers are convinced about moving to 5G, more than three-fourth respondents expect 5G services to address one or more issues like speed, network availability and call drop/connect issues. Given that 4G has not improved the quality of calls or internet speed despite consumers having invested in the new generation of mobile phones and other gadgets, there is a general sense of cautiousness about investing in mobiles and other 5G compatible devices.
According to the survey, 20% mobile subscribers surveyed already have a 5G compliant device and 4% are planning to buy a new device this year to avail of the new services being rolled out. Assuming 5G addresses one or more of the issues highlighted in the survey, another 20% are likely to purchase a 5G compliant device in 2023. Similarly, while 55% respondents are willing to pay up to 10% more for 5G service plans as and when they have a ready device, 43% are clearly opposed to paying anything additional for a 5G service plan.
The survey received over 29,000 responses from mobile service consumers located in 318 districts of India. 64% respondents were men while 36% respondents were women. 47% respondents were from tier 1, 34% from tier 2 and 19% respondents were from tier 3, 4 and rural districts.
‘’The need of the hour clearly is for the Government to work with telecom providers and keep the 5G prices as close as possible to the current pricing and work with device makers to find ways of making as many device models complaint through the necessary software upgrades and keep the prices of entry level 5G devices low so more subscribers can migrate than what the survey is currently projecting,’’ said LocalCircles.