New Survey Shows Americans Would Rather “Switch Than Fight” When Choosing Dwellings And Buildings With Poor Cell Coverage
SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Sept. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — If you operate a hotel, office building or apartment complex, and think that cell phone coverage isn’t a factor in attracting and retaining customers – a new independent survey might make you think again. And if you’ve ever had to run down the hallway, practically shouting, “I’m sorry, did you say your pet dog Fluffy won us the Smith account?!…hello?” – you know why.
In a recent national study conducted among 847 adults, 63% of respondents said they would never return to, or select, a hotel – for either business or leisure purposes – if they knew it had poor cell phone reception. That compares with 54% just three years ago in a related survey when respondents were asked about rebooking such hotels. Both studies were conducted by a global, independent research firm and commissioned by Repeated Signal Solutions (RSS), Santa Barbara, CA. RSS is one of the nation’s leading providers of in-building cell and wireless antenna systems.
Other Recent Study Findings
- Nearly 60 (or 58)% would never select – or return to – office space for their own business with poor cell phone reception.
- Similarly, nearly 60 (or 58)% would never select – or return to living in – an apartment building with poor cell phone reception.
Key Demographic Differences
- For those 45-54, the percent spiked to 67 v. 58 of the entire population for office space.
- In the West, the percent jumped to 69 v. 58 of the entire population for office space.
- For those aged 18-34, the percent rose to 64 v. 58 of the entire population for apartment dwellers.
- In the Northeast, the percent increased to 65 v. 58 of the entire population for apartment dwellers.
“Today’s consumer has a very low threshold for poor cell coverage and dropped calls, and it has a significant impact on where they choose to live, work and spend leisure time,” said Scott Groff, CEO of Repeated Signal Solutions.
“The findings are a major eye opener for hoteliers, developers and landlords, suggesting a more competitive landscape than just three years ago. Strong cell coverage is clearly an expectation, whether communicating from an office, home or business conference – just as smart phones have become virtual must-haves. Conversely, rendering a phone next to useless becomes a deal breaker in attracting and keeping a customer base,” said Groff.
Firms Find Ways to Fund, Meet Demand
“Large companies are now asking cellular telephone carriers to subsidize the installation of local or distributed antenna networks, often called “distributed antenna systems” (DAS) – because these employers are under contract to pay for hundreds of employee cell phones monthly,” Groff said.
“Unfortunately for smaller companies or those that want coverage from more than one carrier, it’s not economically viable for carriers to contribute funding – so smaller employers seek cell-friendly office space,” he said. “The survey suggests strongly that buildings equipped with fast, reliable cell coverage are most desirable – and therefore their owners can legitimize market rate rents or fees,” he added.
Groff explained that the numbers skewed higher in the Northeast and Western regions because: “Cell coverage is particularly poor in downtown larger cities with high building density, making distributed antenna systems (DAS) a greater necessity.” His firm designs and installs wireless, carrier-approved antennas placed inside buildings at a cost that he says is mitigated by client acquisition and retention revenues.
The study has a margin of error of +/- 3% and was conducted among cell phone owners.
About Repeated Signal Solutions
Repeated Signal Solutions (RSS) is a leading national provider of in-building cell and wireless antenna systems. Based in Santa Barbara, Calif., RSS designs and installs wireless systems that enable cell phone, two-way radio, WiFi and public safety radio reception within buildings. The company serves such industries as hospitality, commercial development, health care, and financial services, among others. Visit Repeated Signal Solutions at: www.repeatedsignal.com.
SOURCE Repeated Signal Solutions