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Mobile Network Providers - US - May 2017

"In February 2017, Verizon changed its postpaid plans to unlimited data plans, effectively closing the period in which major carriers were focused on shared data plans, provided that consumers are willing to pay for the unlimited plans with AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile having already made this shift. If consumers do convert to unlimited, the use of data caps as a means to increase revenue will come to an end."
- Billy Hulkower, Senior Technology Analyst

This Report discusses the following key topics:

  • Adoption nearly complete
  • Service revenue in decline
  • Growth via acquisitions tough

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Adoption nearly complete
            • Figure 1: Cell phone ownership among adults and teens, April 2014-November 2016
          • Service revenue in decline
            • Figure 2: Wireless carrier service revenues, 2013-16
          • Growth via acquisitions tough
            • Figure 3: Tenure with current carrier, January 2017
          • The opportunities
            • Moving into cars
              • Figure 4: Willingness to pay for mobile internet for cars, by price, January 2017
            • Reducing spending via more targeted marketing
              • Figure 5: Interest in changing service, January 2017
            • Focusing on the needs of the minority
              • Figure 6: Attitudes to unlimited data, January 2017
            • What it means
            • The Market – What You Need to Know

              • Stagnant sales
                • Slow growth for branded service
                  • Growth in M2M
                    • Most subscribers stick with carrier for three years or more
                      • Tablets retain room to propel sales
                        • OTT for branded prepaid
                        • Market Size and Forecast

                          • Growth narrows 2015-16
                              • Figure 7: US wireless service revenues fan chart and forecast, at current prices, 2011-21
                              • Figure 8: US wireless service revenues and forecast, at current prices, 2011-21
                          • Market Breakdown

                            • Postpaid slowest segment
                                • Figure 9: Subscriptions, prepaid vs postpaid, 2015 vs 2016
                              • Gains seen at MVNOs
                                  • Figure 10: Subscriptions, branded prepaid vs branded postpaid vs MVNO, 2015 vs 2016
                              • Market Perspective

                                • Adoption nearly complete
                                  • Little room for expansion in unlimited
                                    • Figure 11: Cell phone ownership among adults and teens, April 2014-November 2016
                                  • Courting teens and tweens
                                    • Figure 12: Cell phone ownership among adults and teens, April 2015-November 2016
                                  • M2M subscriptions shine
                                  • Market Factors

                                    • Growth via acquisitions tough
                                      • Figure 13: Tenure with current carrier, January 2017
                                    • Smartphones headed toward universal penetration
                                      • Tablets still offer gains
                                        • Figure 14: Smartphone and tablet ownership, April 2015 vs January 2017
                                      • Larger, faster phones drive mobile entertainment
                                        • Figure 15: Activities conducted by device, PC vs phone, January 2017
                                    • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                                      • T-Mobile rising
                                        • Equipment sales drive growth
                                          • Value rejected
                                            • 5G rollout this year
                                            • Carrier Sales and Subscriptions

                                              • T-Mobile sales grow 16% in 2016
                                                • Figure 16: Service and equipment sales by carrier, 2015-16
                                              • Limited changes in share favor T-Mobile brands
                                                • Figure 17: Branded subscriptions by carrier, 2015-16
                                            • What’s Working?

                                              • Equipment sales
                                                  • Figure 18: Wireless carrier equipment sales revenues, 2012-16
                                              • What’s Struggling?

                                                • Value
                                                  • Figure 19: Price per month for unlimited service, April 2017
                                                • Service revenue
                                                  • Figure 20: Wireless carrier service revenues, 2013-16
                                              • What’s Next?

                                                • Tweens and smartphone ownership
                                                  • Auto subscriptions
                                                    • Subscriptions for cars a tough sell, but necessary
                                                        • Figure 21: Interest in mobile internet for cars, January 2017
                                                      • Services tout safety, teen tracking, happy kids
                                                          • Figure 22: Verizon Hum creative materials, December 2016
                                                        • 5G
                                                        • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                          • Limited interested in changing carrier
                                                            • 3Cs: Coverage, cost, confidence more important than speed, promotions
                                                              • Unlimited not for everyone
                                                              • Carrier

                                                                • Majority opt for higher-cost carriers
                                                                  • Figure 23: Mobile network provider, January 2017
                                                                • Differences in income typify carrier selection
                                                                  • Figure 24: Mobile network provider, CHAID tree by demographic groups, January 2017
                                                                  • Figure 25: Mobile network provider CHAID, January 2017
                                                              • Intent to Switch Carrier

                                                                • Only one in six planning a change
                                                                  • Figure 26: Interest in changing service, January 2017
                                                                • Parents in second year of service top target
                                                                  • Figure 27: Interest in changing service – CHAID tree, January 2017
                                                                • Dads standout
                                                                  • Figure 28: Interest in changing service in next month, by gender and age, January 2017
                                                                • Hispanics carry elevated intent to change carriers
                                                                  • Figure 29: Interest in changing service in next month, by Hispanic origin, January 2017
                                                                • Urbanites busting a move
                                                                  • Figure 30: Interest in changing service in next month, by location of residence, January 2017
                                                              • Carrier Selection

                                                                • Confidence scores
                                                                  • Figure 31: Carrier selection – Leading factors, January 2017
                                                                • Forget the phone
                                                                  • Figure 32: Carrier selection – Trailing factors, January 2017
                                                                • Low-cost shoppers keep moving
                                                                  • Figure 33: Selection of lowest-cost carrier, by intent to change carriers, January 2017
                                                                • Hispanics price sensitive
                                                                  • Figure 34: Selection of lowest-cost carrier, by race and Hispanic origin, January 2017
                                                                • Youngest adults buy speed
                                                                  • Figure 35: Selection of carrier due to fastest network, by age, January 2017
                                                              • Attitudes to Data

                                                                • Half of subscribers deprioritize unlimited
                                                                  • Figure 36: Attitudes to unlimited data, January 2017
                                                                • Switchers want their unlimited service fast
                                                                  • Figure 37: Attitudes to unlimited data, by interest in changing service, January 2017
                                                                • Younger age groups need that data
                                                                  • Figure 38: Interest in unlimited data, by age, January 2017
                                                                • Subscribers make informed decisions
                                                                  • Figure 39: Interest in unlimited data, by carrier, January 2017
                                                              • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                • Data sources
                                                                  • Sales data
                                                                    • Fan chart forecast
                                                                      • Consumer survey data
                                                                        • CHAID analysis methodology
                                                                          • Direct marketing creative
                                                                            • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                              • Abbreviations
                                                                                • Terms
                                                                                • Appendix – The Market

                                                                                    • Figure 40: Total US sales and forecast of market, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2011-21
                                                                                • Appendix – The Consumer

                                                                                    • Figure 41: Optimal target group for changing service – CHAID output, January 2017

                                                                                Companies Covered

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                                                                                Mobile Network Providers - US - May 2017

                                                                                US $3,995.00 (Excl.Tax)