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COVID-19 Impact on Potential 5G Upgrades: China Consumer Survey Analysis

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Report Summary:

With all three Chinese operators offering mobile 5G service in 2020, the challenge is now how to increase subscriber uptake as the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have shifted consumer sentiment and purchase behavior.
Strategy Analytics has conducted surveys to assess how consumers have responded to the pandemic  and it influence on consumer plans to upgrade to 5G and which consumers are most likely to churn. In China,  the impact of COVID-19 on plans to upgrade to 5G service has been predominantly negative with  twice as many postponing or cancelling plans to upgrade compared to those who have decided to upgrade sooner than planned or had not planned upgrade but now plan to do so.

With a third of subscribers saying they are actively considering switching mobile service provider in the next three months for a lower cost plan due to COVID-19, creating attractive 5G service and device bundles will be essential to manage churn and attract new subscribers.

Table of Contents

  • 5G Uptake in China: COVID-19 has slowed but not stalled consumer plans to adopt 5G 
  • During the pandemic, consumers have increased connectivity related activities
  • Purchase intent impact of COVID-19: smartphones, computers, upgrade to 5G mobile service
  • Risk of churn due to COVID-19
  • 5G service upgrade plans among likely and not likely to churn subscribers
  • Implications: Survey results key takeaways of Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on consumer 5G upgrades in China

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How do you make a return on the large investments into mobile infrastructure required for 5G? How do you meet consumers requirements for a better service whilst being sensitive to price changes? And how do vendors present their value proposition to gaining a worthwhile share of the market?

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