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1 in 3 afraid to watch the World Cup on their mobile devices
Running into your wireless data cap continues to be an ongoing issue for many people around the world. Currently, both Verizon and AT&T have family plans that offer around 10GB for slightly more than $100 per month.
Recently, Netflix has gotten some attention for their release of several shows in 4K. Although the technology is great, the chief concern continues to be the issue of consumers quickly running into their broadband and wireless data caps. If a consumer wants to stream a show in 1080p on Netflix, it will take up to 4.7GB per hour. If that consumer now wants to watch a show in 4K on Netflix, expect to use around 18.8GB/hour.
Therefore, it should not be a surprise to expect data amounts to continue rising as more TV programming and events get streamed onto one’s mobile device.
This problem is not just a United States issue. A report issued by Openwave Mobility found that 1 in 3 British consumers who want to watch the upcoming World Cup on a mobile device will not do so due to poor mobile video quality and fears of ‘bill shock’ from their wireless providers. The results of another report issued in May by Censuswide had similar findings with mobile users across England, Spain and Germany.
In Germany, 1 in 3 said they would refrain due to fears of bill shock while 1 in 2 said that “appalling mobile video quality” is the reason for not watching the World Cup on their mobile device. On a disturbing note, 43% of Spanish, 34% of German and 21% of British mobile users found that they would be willing to pay an additional fee for better video quality on their mobile devices for the World Cup.
Last year, ESPN reportedly was in talks with several wireless providers to have their content get to users without affecting their data caps. As of today, this story seems dead most likely to rising suspicion about why data caps continue to be so low even after the wireless industry has all but given up the myth that smartphone data plans are capped because of congestion.
Additionally, it seems that people are slowly starting to realize that if a company like ESPN was allowed to do this, it would put up a tremendous roadblock towards smaller startups seeking to compete. Good luck getting a wireless provider to raise caps if such agreements were made with several big brands.
If content providers do begin subsidizing wireless plans, then consumers should demand lower monthly rates — or the elimination of data caps entirely, as that extra cost will be borne by ESPN and others. Of course, we all know that will never happen. Unfortunately, it works out all too well for wireless providers, most of whom have shown little interest in upgrading their infrastructure even as they shed crocodile tears over congestion.