5G Awareness Has Reached the Masses, But Majority Do Not Understand 5G Network Types

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Only 18% of consumers report understanding of the different 5G network types currently available in the U.S., according to The NPD Group

5G-enabled Android devices have been available to consumers, which may explain their increased awareness of 5G flavors, while iOS users have not yet had the opportunity to upgrade to 5G. Given the stronger interest from iOS users, a 5G-enabled iPhone could help drive adoption,

While 5G technology has not yet been widely adopted, the majority of U.S. consumers are aware of 5G and the promise of super-fast data transmissions that enable superior multimedia streaming and enhanced gaming experiences on mobile devices. In fact, according to the latest Mobile Connectivity Report from NPD’s Connected Intelligence, 9 out of 10 consumers are aware of 5G networks; however, only 18% have heard of and understand the difference between the 5G network band types such as mid-band or high-band (Millimeter Wave) currently available in the U.S.

Generally, Android users have a higher level of awareness of the varieties of 5G networks currently available. In fact, 45% of Android users compared to 40% of iOS users are aware that there are different 5G network options. Despite the lack of knowledge around various 5G network types, 2 out of 3 consumers currently report interest in purchasing a 5G-enabled smartphone. Based on the report findings, iOS users show higher levels of interest (40% extremely or very interested) than Android users (33% extremely or very interested).

“5G-enabled Android devices have been available to consumers, which may explain their increased awareness of 5G flavors, while iOS users have not yet had the opportunity to upgrade to 5G. Given the stronger interest from iOS users, a 5G-enabled iPhone could help drive adoption” said Brad Akyuz, executive director, industry analyst, NPD Connected Intelligence. “On the other hand, the current premature state of 5G networks in terms of speed and coverage will continue to be a barrier in the mass adoption of 5G smartphones. 5G smartphone volumes are poised to increase as networks improve and 5G smartphone prices gradually decrease.”    

Methodology
The results of The NPD Group Connected Intelligence Mobile Connectivity Report are based on consumer panel research that reached 5,100 U.S. cellphone users, aged 18+ from diverse regions and demographical backgrounds. This survey was completed in August 2020.

About Connected Intelligence
Connected Intelligence provides competitive intelligence and insight on the rapidly evolving consumer’s connected environment. The service focuses on the three core components of the connected market: the device, the broadband access that provides the connectivity and the content that drives consumer behavior. These three pillars of the connected ecosystem are analyzed through a comprehensive review of what is available, adopted, and consumed by the customer, as well as reviewing how the market will evolve over time and what the various vendors can do to best position themselves in this evolving market. For more information: http://www.connected-intelligence.com.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
NPD offers data, industry expertise, and prescriptive analytics to help our clients grow their businesses in a changing world. Over 2,000 companies worldwide rely on us to help them measure, predict, and improve performance across all channels, including brick-and-mortar and e-commerce. We have offices in 27 cities worldwide, with operations spanning the Americas, Europe, and APAC. Practice areas include apparel, appliances, automotive, beauty, books, B2B technology, consumer technology, e-commerce, fashion accessories, food consumption, foodservice, footwear, home, juvenile products, media entertainment, mobile, office supplies, retail, sports, toys, video games, and watches. For more information, visit npd.com. Follow us on Twitter: @npdgroup and @npdtech.

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Megan Scott
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