YouGov SixthSense conducted a survey which found consumers wanted the ease and speed provided by a 4G connection, but most did not know enough about it to get excited.
Of the 1,456 British adults surveyed, more than half said they were looking to surf the web at speeds nearer to those at home, and over a third wanted their maps applications to load more quickly.
While 80 percent said that they were aware of 4G, only 21 percent said they were confident in knowing the benefits it actually holds for them.
Almost half said they had a ‘vague understanding’ of what it was, with one in three admitting they had ‘no idea’.
The cross sample was also concerned about the extra cost of 4G, with the average increase in costs currently standing at £14.70 per month.
Russell Feldman, Technology & Telecoms Director at YouGov said the survey highlighted the challenges faced by network providers in making customers interested in 4G access.
Only 23 percent claimed to be actually excited by the prospect of using it, and one in three say none of 4G’s features held any interest for them, he said.
This means that consumers will be wary at the thought of the cost of upgrading their contracts so their phones and tablets qualify to connect to the improved service, and 66 pe cent said they were reluctant to shell out money on new devices.
It will make it harder for O2, for example, to have 98 percent of the population on 4G up to two years before Ofcom’s 2017 deadline.
Fieldman said that networks need to be savvy when selling it to consumers showing not just that it exists but also what it does. Take-up is likely to be a slow burn as consumers hold off making decisions until they see it in action, he added.
4G was officially launched in the UK during August last year after Ofcom gave EE, owner of Orange and T-Mobile, the go ahead to create fourth-generation mobile services.
Last week it was announced that the speed of 4G connections through EE would rise to 30Mbps, compared to the average speed of 12Mbps.