[Forrester] Consumers Don't Want Wireless Web... Yet.

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From: Adam Rifkin -4K (adam@XeNT.ics.uci.edu)
Date: Wed Jul 26 2000 - 14:07:31 PDT

Asked to describe the basis of the company's optimism, Callinan said
simply, "We can't fail."


Clearly a person who doesn't know how to make unfalsifiable statements
that may later make him look bad...

> Consumers Don't Want Wireless Web....Yet
> By Kevin Featherly, Newsbytes
> 26 Jul 2000, 12:13 PM CST
> Despite the industry buzz circulating around the idea of the coming
> wireless Internet, a new Forrester Research report indicates, the North
> American buying public simply doesn't care. But it will, the report
> says, as consumers come to understand what it means to be ubiquitously
> connected.
> The report by Forrester analyst Patrick Callinan, "Latent Demand for a
> Wireless Web," suggests that the only factors standing between the US
> and Canadian carriers, and the kind of wireless adoption seen in Europe
> and Asia, are consumer education and the work of determined wireless
> moguls "willing to blast through the indifference."
> The report draws on a pair of Forrester technology surveys of nearly
> 10,000 representative North American consumers and households, both
> conducted this year. Relying on their data, the Callinan report asserts
> that, despite the apathy with which many US and Canada residents greet
> the idea of wireless-Web handsets, their disinterest merely shields a
> strong "latent demand" for the technology - demand which the survey
> insists consumers are not yet aware.
> "Consumers don't think they want the wireless Web - yet," Callinan
> states in the report. "But they will. Forrester believes that the
> wireless Web can tap into a powerful type of consumer interest. ...
> Wireless Web providers can plot a course for growth."
> Asked to describe the basis of the company's optimism, Callinan said
> simply, "We can't fail."
> He explained that various Forrester reports issued this year carry the
> same message, that carriers can snare a huge market if they mind their
> wireless p's and q's. "If operators do what we're suggesting," Callinan
> said, "then (wireless) will take off. It has to take off. So the
> operators will do whatever they can to make it work, because they've
> invested so much time and effort and equipment into this. They have to
> do it."
> And the report suggests that inroads may already be under construction.
> Forrester's two surveys indicated that 35 percent of households are at
> least willing to entertain the idea of using the wireless Web.
> It is among those willing to consider buying into the technology, the
> report says, that the "early adopter" types can be found. These are
> likely to be under 40, college-educated men with better-than-average
> incomes. Two-thirds already are online - 40 percent of them for more
> than two years - and 37 percent of those online have bought something
> there in the past two three years. And about two-thirds of them already
> have cell phones, as opposed to 50 percent of respondents overall.
> "Like all early adopters," the report says, "they're willing to try new
> things and see themselves as natural leaders. They say they work long
> hours. But they are also more extroverted and image conscious than
> average - a sign that their Web consumption will be conspicuous."
> Meaning others less prone to "natural leadership" will be watching with
> interest, the report suggest.
> The figures suggest that the failure of the North American buying public
> to buy into the wireless Web early is more a matter of consumer
> knowledge and understanding than an outright rejection of the
> technology, Callinan suggests.
> "I'm a demand-side analyst," he told Newsbytes. "So all I'm saying (to
> carriers) is you've got a lot of ignorance out there among consumers,
> what are you going to do about it?"
> What they ought to do about it, he said, is to fine-tune the services
> they offer. Callinan said that carriers need to begin to focus harder on
> what he called "here-and-now" and "location-based" services, which he
> said will prove to be the among wireless Web's mainstays.
> He gave as an example of a location-based service a wireless direction
> finders similar to the Web-based Mapquest.com service that could be
> accessed through a cell phone in the event of a flat tire on a rural
> road. A here-and-now service would include something like a telephone
> directory that would allow someone stranded in such a situation to make
> an immediate phone call to the appropriate number for assistance.
> Those examples illustrate why Forrester projects that cell phones,
> rather than the more function-packed personal digital assistants like
> Palm Pilots, will eventually achieve dominance over the wireless Web. By
> 2005, Forrester projects, cell phones will account for 80 percent of the
> wireless Web market, while PDAs will total just 10 percent of the
> market, with other devices following.
> Then there is the issue of price.
> "If there is one piece of advice that I'd give to the mobile operators,
> developing the revenue streams that are available to you from the mobile
> Internet or mobile data in general will require that you stop milking
> the early-adopter consumers," Callinan said. "In other words charging
> them a premium price simply because they were first to market. Instead,
> (carriers) should go for penetration pricing, where you bring the prices
> as low as you can bear in order to get the volume in order to train the
> consumers to use their handsets for more than just voice.
> "If they do that," he said, "then they can gradually get more data
> minutes from consumers. So they'll make it back by increased use of
> minutes, which they can charge for. And there will probably be some
> advertising revenues."
> He said that if carriers get over the humps created by lack of
> appropriate service and confusing pricing structures, then success on
> the wireless Web becomes a simple marketing issue.
> "There's nothing wrong with consumers right now," Callinan said. "It's
> latent demand; it hasn't been exposed yet. If (carriers) do what we tell
> them to do ... then all of our predictions will come true."


"For a self-made man like George W. Bush to lower himself to accepting money from his family must have been very hard," said Kate O'Beirne, Washington editor for The National Review. "Here is a man who loathes the notion of privilege. However, this was a case where he had to be man enough to admit that he needed a little help. And, luckily, his parents were able to spare the $2 million." -- http://www.theonion.com/onion3625/bush_donation.html

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