OTT is All About Calling?
As Mobile World Congress winds down in Barcelona today, mobile operators might want to heed the results of a recent Voxox study, which revealed the over-the-top (OTT) communications software usage of consumers.
There were several findings that mobile operators, virtual PBX vendors and anyone interested in the mobile communications space should note.
First, OTT apps are being used for calling local friends, not just for international communications. Roughly 52 percent of respondents used OTT apps to call local friends, with only 20 percent using such apps to call friends in other countries. The use of OTT for family communications is even lower, with 13.8 percent calling family in another country with an OTT app and a measly 7.5 percent calling local family with OTT.
The same was found with texting via OTT, too; 58.5 percent of respondents use their OTT app to text friends locally, while only 21 percent use it to send texts internationally.
This shows the penetration of OTT in the daily lives of customers, as OTT is not just a cost-cutting tool for international communications. Since cellular minutes have come down in price, it implies the value of unified communications that is offered via these OTT apps.
Second—and this should be good news for the virtual PBX space—voice calling is the most widely used OTT feature. Even though texting has become pervasive, 82 percent of respondents reported that voice calling was the feature they most used within their OTT app.
Mobile operators should see this as a call to improve their calling experience and offer their own unified communications solutions, since obviously the value of calling is magnified when tied to other communications mediums—even if calling still is dominant.
Third, Voxox found that roughly 43 percent of those surveyed use OTT not only for personal communications, but also for work communications.
This shows how the lines between consumer and business use is blurring, and that mobile operators need to offer solutions that are “prosumer,” able to work at home just as easily as at work.
The survey also found that Millennials—those between the ages of 19 and 35—were the heaviest users of OTT, at 71.4 percent adoption. No surprise there.
Edited by Maurice Nagle