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J.D. Power and Associates Reports: Feature-Rich Wireless Mobile Phones Increase Average Consumer Service Spending for Both Handset Manufacturers and Service Providers
[November 15, 2007]

J.D. Power and Associates Reports: Feature-Rich Wireless Mobile Phones Increase Average Consumer Service Spending for Both Handset Manufacturers and Service Providers

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., Nov. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- The average reported monthly spending for wireless services is $14 higher among customers who use a variety of features and services on their cell phone, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2007 U.S. Wireless Mobile Phone Evaluation Study(SM) -- Volume 2 released today. This difference can have a positive impact on the bottom line for both handset manufacturers and service providers.

The study finds that owners who send and receive e-mail and text message alerts, take and send photos and videos or download music files on their mobile handsets have an average reported monthly service bill of $77. This compares to a reported average monthly service bill of $63 among owners who do not actively use these features on their cell phones. In addition, customers who most frequently use their cell phones for non-voice applications typically spend nearly twice as much for their current handset than do customers who do not use non-voice applications ($70 vs. $37, respectively).

"It's not surprising that handset manufacturers and service providers are offering more cell phones with advanced features in order to increase revenue," said Kirk Parsons, senior director of wireless services at J.D. Power and Associates. "Wireless monthly service fees and handset price points have increased as technologies and services have been added to phones, particularly those that include advanced features such as downloading and playing MP3 files or streaming video. For example, the average reported monthly wireless bill has increased $13 since 2005 to $73 in 2007."

The study also finds that photo applications -- taking, sending and receiving pictures -- are particularly popular among wireless owners, as 34 percent of customers report using this feature. This marks a considerable increase from 2005, when only 19 percent of wireless customers reported using photo applications. Speakerphone capabilities are also popular among customers, with 34 percent using this feature-up from 26 percent in 2005. Other handset features that are most frequently used among wireless customers include: send/receive short text messages (26%); gaming (13%); Bluetooth capabilities (11%); download/use ringback tones (9%); picture messaging/e-mail (9%); surfing the Internet (8%); and instant messaging (8%).

"As cell phones become more complicated, it's going to be critical for handset manufacturers and wireless service providers to educate their customers on how to use these new services and features," said Parsons. "Making it easier for customers to learn how to operate specific products and services can increase satisfaction as well as promote future purchases of value-added products and accessories."

The study measures customer satisfaction with wireless handsets by examining five key factors. In order of importance, they are: physical design (24%); operation (22%); features (20%); handset durability (19%); and battery function (15%).

Sony Ericsson ranks highest in overall wireless customer satisfaction with a score of 741 points on a 1,000-point scale, performing particularly well in features and battery functionality. Sony Ericsson also receives the highest ratings from customers in operation and handset durability. Samsung (728) and Motorola (726) follow Sony Ericsson in the rankings.

The study finds that 40 percent of customers chose their wireless phone primarily due to the design and style of the handset. Other popular reasons for selecting a specific handset include: received for free (27%), easy to use (22%), discounted/reduced price (21%), small size (19%), digital camera features (15%) and variety of features offered (15%).

Volume 2 of the 2007 U.S. Wireless Mobile Phone Evaluation Study is based on experiences reported by 18,453 wireless users who have owned their current mobile phone for less than two years. The results are from the two most recent study reporting waves, which were conducted in April and July 2007. Visit to view customer satisfaction ratings for wireless service and carrier performance, call quality, customer care, retail sales and mobile phone handsets.

Overall Satisfaction Scores
(Based on a 1,000-point scale)

Sony Ericsson 741
Samsung 728
Motorola 726
Industry Average 723
Nokia 721
LG 719
Sanyo 716
UTStarcom (Audiovox) 693
Kyocera 692

About J.D. Power and Associates

Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is an ISO 9001-registered global marketing information services firm operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting, performance improvement, training and customer satisfaction. The firm's quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. For more information on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone ratings, and more, please visit J.D. Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

About The McGraw-Hill Companies:
Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies is a leading global information services provider meeting worldwide needs in the financial services, education and business information markets through leading brands such as Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, BusinessWeek and J.D. Power and Associates. The Corporation has more than 280 offices in 40 countries. Sales in 2006 were $6.3 billion. Additional information is available at

J.D. Power and Associates Media Contacts:
John Tews Syvetril Perryman
Troy, Mich. Westlake Village, Calif.
(248) 312-4119 (805) 418-8103
[email protected] [email protected]

No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and Associates.

Photo: Archive: Photo Desk, [email protected]

J.D. Power and Associates

CONTACT: John Tews, +1-248-312-4119, [email protected], or media,Syvetril Perryman, +1-805-418-8103, [email protected], both of J.D.Power and Associates

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