1 in 3 British fans have said that they would think twice before watching the World Cup on their mobile because of poor quality video and fears over price.
The research, which was conducted by by Openwave Mobility, is sobering news for mobile providers and broadcasters on the eve of what is widely being dubbed the first digital World Cup.
In Germany and Spain consumers are more likely to use their mobile devices to watch matches, however fears over “bill shock” and complaints about poor video quality remain.
However there was some heartening news, as 21 per cent of British, 43 per cent of Spanish and 34 per cent of German subscribers said they would be willing to pay extra for premium video services that would guarantee a higher quality of video.
John Giere, CEO at Openwave Mobility said: “A major event like the World Cup does not only generate instantaneous revenues, it can also change habits as people who were not mobile video users realise that this is a great way to keep up with the action. As part of the research, we also looked at the growth in mobile video from the 2010 World Cup. Across Europe we saw 2 to 4 times as many people wanting to view at least part of the games on mobile in 2014. This is not just due to an increase in smartphone penetration, that was already high in 2010. This is more about the increasing penetration of mobile video as an activity people can engage with and enjoy. Unfortunately it seems that much of this momentum will be lost through the old perceptions of high price and low quality.
“The fact is that consumers are happy to pay a fee for a service that delivers quality and gives them a great user experience. It is now more important than ever for mobile operators to meet the insatiable appetite for mobile video and monetize their data.”