» ISP News » 

Poor Home WiFi Driving UK Home Internet Users to Mobile Broadband

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015 (11:49 am) - Score 1,193

A new survey of 2,000 British adults from Global Wireless Solutions (GWS) has claimed that 1 in 4 people are using a Mobile Broadband (3G, 4G) connection at home in order to get online because their fixed line broadband fuelled home WiFi service is not good enough.

Overall 16% of respondents found that while they are able to connect their mobile devices to home WiFi network, the connection speed was often so slow that they typically opted to use data from their a mobile tariff instead. Similarly 13% claimed they never connect their mobile devices to the home WiFi network and prefer to use mobile data.

GWS also spent 6 weeks using “advanced mobile network testing rigs” in order to gather and analyse data from inside and outside more than 50 houses in London, which it uses to reveal how the primary Mobile Network Operators (MNO) fared when it came to 4G penetration; both outside and inside London homes.

% of time on 4G modes Three UK EE O2 Vodafone
Outside London properties 78% 100% 95% 95%
Inside London properties 55% 85% 91% 87%

The research also asked respondents to identify which tasks were most popular while surfing using mobile data instead of WiFi.

Tasks undertaken using mobile data and not WiFi % of respondents
1 Social media e.g. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter 57%
2 Messaging e.g. Whatsapp, iMessage, BBM 52%
3 Internet shopping e.g. looking for deals, making travel plans, etc 46%
4 Playing mobile games e.g. Candy Crush, Clash of Clans, Angry Birds 41%
5 Working from home e.g. answering emails 40%

The survey, which perhaps represents bad news for mobile operators that would much rather be off-loading data from their expensive mobile networks and flushing it down cheaper fixed line connections, further suggests that bedrooms are typically the worst rooms in British houses when it comes to WiFi connectivity and they’re followed by kitchens and living rooms.

However what’s less clear from the research is whether or not a distinction is being drawn between raw WiFi performance and that of the underlying fixed line broadband connection. Some consumers might easily be identifying WiFi as the culprit, even if the actual home broadband connection is to blame.

But if the problem truly is hardware based then buying a better router and or reading our 10 Top Tips for Boosting Your Home Wi-Fi Wireless Network Speeds guide might help.

Share with Twitter
Share with Linkedin
Share with Facebook
Share with Reddit
Share with Pinterest
Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
4 Responses
  1. Avatar DTMark

    That 4G would deliver better performance to the home than ADSL, and sometimes VDSL, is hardly surprising. The idea that fixed line would always outperform mobile was shot to bits with 4G; even my O2 phone will outperform the upstream of the fastest VDSL connections just about anywhere with a 4G signal.

    However I wonder how many of the respondents actually just have never set up Wi-Fi on their phones, so apathy is responsible – “there’s no need to connect it to Wi-Fi since it works by itself and I have to pay for the thing anyway so I might as well use it”. The question “Do you know how to set up Wi-Fi on your mobile” would be a pertinent one.

    I’d also like to see a bigger survey in places other than London which is known for having abysmal internet connectivity in many areas and the results cross-referenced with the users’ fixed line speeds to remove the guesswork as to whether it’s the Wi-Fi or the underlying connection that is poor.

    • Avatar FibreFred

      Yeah I reckon it would be beyond the average user to know how to set-up good Wi-fi in their home which to be fair is a bit of an art, much easier to just click on mobile data and off you go.

  2. Avatar 186k

    If this survey is at all representative, I’d say this is actually good news not bad for the mobile operators

  3. I agree. This is a good thing and this game plan should be pursued, so people can experience how efficient it could be.

Comments RSS Feed

Javascript must be enabled to post (most browsers do this automatically)

Privacy Notice: Please note that news comments are anonymous, which means that we do NOT require you to enter any real personal details to post a message. By clicking to submit a post you agree to storing your comment content, display name, IP, email and / or website details in our database, for as long as the post remains live.

Only the submitted name and comment will be displayed in public, while the rest will be kept private (we will never share this outside of ISPreview, regardless of whether the data is real or fake). This comment system uses submitted IP, email and website address data to spot abuse and spammers. All data is transferred via an encrypted (https secure) session.

NOTE 1: Sometimes your comment might not appear immediately due to site cache (this is cleared every few hours) or it may be caught by automated moderation / anti-spam.

NOTE 2: Comments that break our rules, spam, troll or post via known fake IP/proxy servers may be blocked or removed.
Cheapest Superfast ISPs
  • Hyperoptic £21.00 (*22.00)
    Avg. Speed 50Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • SSE £22.00
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited (FUP)
    Gift: None
  • xln telecom £22.74 (*47.94)
    Avg. Speed 66Mbps, Unlimited (FUP)
    Gift: None
  • Post Office £22.90 (*37.00)
    Avg. Speed 38Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Direct Save Telecom £22.95 (*29.95)
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
Prices inc. Line Rental | View All
The Top 20 Category Tags
  1. BT (2555)
  2. FTTP (2301)
  3. FTTC (1688)
  4. Building Digital UK (1628)
  5. Politics (1463)
  6. Openreach (1445)
  7. Business (1277)
  8. FTTH (1132)
  9. Statistics (1120)
  10. Mobile Broadband (1071)
  11. Fibre Optic (987)
  12. Ofcom Regulation (933)
  13. Wireless Internet (932)
  14. 4G (927)
  15. Virgin Media (876)
  16. EE (607)
  17. Sky Broadband (602)
  18. TalkTalk (588)
  19. Vodafone (543)
  20. 3G (418)
Helpful ISP Guides and Tips

Copyright © 1999 to Present - ISPreview.co.uk - All Rights Reserved - Terms , Privacy and Cookie Policy , Links , Website Rules , Contact