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Mobile Data Usage and the True Drivers of Customer Satisfaction

A BCG study of key telco stakeholders worldwide revealed surprising insights about data usage and customer satisfaction.

If telcos don’t discover more efficient and effective ways to optimize their networks, they will be in jeopardy of losing customers and profits. Telcos today invest millions to provide ubiquitous high speeds—without understanding what actually satisfies customers.

In reality, customers only need high speeds at certain locations, and their satisfaction depends on more than speed alone. Factors like latency and handset hardware have a bigger impact than many telcos think. Knowledge like this will guide optimization efforts and investments, allowing stakeholders to focus on the most impactful areas: the customer experience and the bottom line.

Uncovering the Truth About Mobile Customers

Contrary to popular belief, speed is not everything to consumers of mobile devices. BCG unearthed the true drivers of satisfaction.

Working with key telco stakeholders around the world, BCG uncovered important—and surprising—insights about usage and customer satisfaction.

The BCG Method

BCG does not take the conventional approach to discovering mobile customer insights. We garner a deep, essential understanding of how customers use mobile devices and apply that knowledge to crucial business decisions.

To accomplish this, we go directly to the source: the customers. Our proprietary solution captured a wealth of information about 1500 volunteers who installed it—what apps they use, at what time, and over what type of network. We also captured levels of latency and throughput.

Next, we measured satisfaction. We utilized unique in-the-moment surveys that appeared on screens almost immediately after a usage session. The real-time check-ins allowed us to correlate satisfaction with actual network performance as recorded by the app—revealing what truly affected customer experience.

1. The least profitable customers are, in many cases, the most costly to serve.

2. Unlimited plans do not increase usage; they shift usage to the cellular network.

3. Optimizing for offloading pays off.

4. For apps, speed isn’t everything

5. Latency has a significant impact on customer satisfaction.

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