I recently spoke to ADC following their survey of mobile usage in UK businesses. The survey revealed that 60.8 percent of users rely on their mobile for their job, while 38.5 percent stated that this was their primary work phone. However, almost two thirds of respondents also complained of less than perfect mobile service in their workplace, with 27.6 percent stating that their work has suffered due to poor reception. The survey covered 200 mobile phone users in September & October.
ADC said that the majority of mobile use now takes place indoors as opposed to outdoors and on the move. The research showed that the biggest problem area for mobile service is in lifts and/or stairwells but there can be problems when users are located anywhere away from the building’s exterior/windows. Other areas participants found especially problematic included conference rooms (28.5 percent), ground floor/basement (24.9 percent), and even at their desk (22.3 percent).
Similar sorts of problems can occur with mobile usage in the home. Indeed the recent Femtocell announcements by AT&T of its Microcell service and Vodafone of its Access Gateway focus on enhanced indoor coverage.
At Juniper Research we see that the indoor coverage issue is going to be a main driver for Femtocells. But we also see further benefits that can be achieved for mobile network operators. These include the opportunity to cluster users in the home environment around one operator via attractive calling plans and the potential for enhanced and innovative services that will generate additional revenues.