A new NOP survey commissioned by Olista, reveals that users who encounter problems in using new mobile data services will simply give up rather than seek assistance. The survey follows on from research conducted earlier this year that revealed that 77% of phone users have never used any mobile data services, and of those that had, only 12% professed to be completely satisfied with the experience.
The surveys were more about promoting Olista’s views (and services) related to proactive customer care. However, why are services failing in the first place?
"… the problem of interoperability among particular handsets and mobile operators. The application officially supports a number of handsets on Cingular, Sprint and T-Mobile, but Google says it should work on "most Java-enabled phones", but of course users are already saying they can’t get it to work on their device or carrier. This is a huge problem for content providers offering standalone apps — unless the program’s been optimized for every handset and/or carrier, fragmentation, and consequently supporting all the users, is a nightmare, and asking the average user to troubleshoot a mobile data application and/or connection is asking way too much. And, of course, if something doesn’t work the first time, people won’t come back to it."
A quick look on the Google Local for Mobile newsgroup reveals how many problems there really are.
Care needs to be taken at the outset of a project to define the (OS) platforms and specific devices that that will be supported. This is usually based on phone capability and current/future market factors. Trying to support ‘most mobile phones’ will only lead to disappointment.