mocoNews - Mobile Data Plans Most Vulnerable To Consumer Cost-Cutting

Tameka Kee
Wednesday, July 8, 2009; 4:00 PM

Carriers like AT&T (NYSE: T) are already concerned about subscribers cutting back on data plans to save money-and new stats from Strategy Analytics (via eMarketer) illustrate why. The research firm surveyed over 1,100 consumers, finding that nearly half (48 percent) of respondents said they'd drop their mobile data plans completely if they were facing budget hardships (and 17 percent said they'd just move to a lower plan).

Not surprisingly, consumers were much less likely to give up their mobile voice service completely (only 19 percent said they would)-but they weren't opposed to scaling back (28 percent said they would). And it's not just talk. In the past 12 months, 22 percent of U.S. adults have cut back on their mobile service to save money, according to the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

The one telecom channel that seems impervious to cutbacks is broadband internet access. Just 10 percent of consumers told Strategy Analytics that they'd drop broadband access altogether; only 21 percent said they'd cut back. (Pew also found that only nine percent of consumers had actually canceled or cut back their broadband internet service in the past year).

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