How Mobile Millennials are Shaping the Future of the Telecommunications Industry

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In the digital era, millennials are quickly emerging as the generation shaping the future of mobile. As digital natives, these young adults – ages 18-35 – are often leading the charge when it comes to adoption and demand for new mobile applications and ideas. In fact, according to Nielsen, 97.5 percent of 18-34 year-olds in the U.S. own a smartphone compared to only 68 percent of those ages 65+.

As the millennial generation increasingly becomes the dominant subscriber base in the coming years, service providers are feeling the pressure to adopt and evolve their offerings to cater to this digitally savvy cohort. 

To determine exactly what millennials will want in their mobile service provider by the year 2022, CSG International recently conducted a survey that polled nearly 1,000 millennials globally to take a closer look at what millennials want when it comes to the future of mobile service.

The survey found that millennials’ priorities are clear: they want their mobile services to be personalized, intelligent and intuitive.

Privacy Concerns? … Millennials Will Forego If It Means Personalization

The results found that 71 percent of millennials are likely to let providers use their mobile data to personalize their service offerings, recommendations and ads. Millennials will also pay more for a service specifically customized to their usage patterns across voice, data, entertainment and other personalized services.

More than ever, millennials are getting comfortable with giving up their data when it comes to personalized advertising, with 57 percent saying they would allow their providers to use their data to tailor advertisements. Providers who take note of this and leverage insights from this data to deliver unique experiences will foster relationships with more engaged and loyal consumers – ultimately resulting in more information and happier customers.

Mobile Business is Booming! Can Providers Keep Up with Expectations?

By 2022, the survey shows that 83 percent of millennials plan to use their smartphones to watch online video. The survey revealed that the ability to watch YouTube, TV series and more in high quality will drive additional spending. To meet the needs of customers, mobile service providers will have to focus on creating a high quality mobile video platform.

Further, with a growing number of subscriptions to manage, consumers are increasingly craving a universal hub for all of their content.

According to another recent CSG International survey, “Going with the Flow: How to Captivate Video Streamers,” consumers want one place to search all of their video content. And, more than 80 percent of streamers subscribe to at least one video service, with half of those subscribing to more than one. That being considered, 46 percent of streamers greatly value “feature” bundles to manage all their subscriptions—and the numbers were even higher for the key demographic of connected millennials.

Providers will need to keep innovating to keep up with where the industry is headed. Beyond consumer expectations, providers need to be on top of trends and the latest tech advances if they want a stake in the $355 billion market by 2020 (projected by IHS Markit).

Mobile’s Purpose – Make Life Easier

Millennials are at a point in their relationship with mobile where they trust it and not only enjoy using it, but depend on it. Now, they are looking at their phones and tablets to simplify and improve their lives. Forty-one percent of respondents said they want their mobile service to become more useful for the trivial things in everyday life. These services included paying bills, automating homes, and even taking action on the consumer’s behalf using artificial intelligence capabilities.

Additionally, more than a third (35 percent) of respondents would love to see their mobile device remember payment preferences and information to automatically make payments and simplify transactions.

In this world of technological needs and wants, what millennials are asking for now is what they will need before long. Providers must deliver solutions that answer millennials’ demands, because if they don’t, millennials will take their money to a provider that can.

About the Author

Mr. Yoo became President of CSG’s Global Carrier Business in March 2016. In this position, he sets and executes the strategic direction for sales and delivery of CSG’s solutions for telecommunications and wireless carriers worldwide, while guiding existing customers to success through the digital transformation of the telecom industry. Mr. Yoo is focused on expanding CSG’s telecommunications industry footprint across the globe. Most recently, Mr. Yoo served as CSG’s senior vice president of global services from 2014 to 2016. His previous roles span from product management, software development, professional services and service delivery at companies including Ericsson, Comverse, Telcordia and Lucent Technologies. Mr. Yoo holds a Bachelor of Computer Science from Harvard University and a Master of Management from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.




Edited by Alicia Young


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