Internet and mobile phones now nearly as important as electricity

Publisert March 16th, 2013 av

Samsung galaxy phonesA reliable electricity grid is not the only thing that Swedes consider important in everyday life. Today, access to the Internet and their mobile phones are almost as important.

 

At the same time, things like public transport, radio and television are not nearly as important. People have little patience when waiting for malfunctions to be fixed. And the younger the user, the less time they are willing to wait.

These are the results of a study into how dependent Swedes are on different types of infrastructure, as conducted by consumer information firm Cint on behalf of Relacom.

Swedish habits and dependence on infrastructure have changed radically in recent years. Access to electricity is – not surprisingly – most important of all. But almost as important nowadays is having access to the Internet and mobile phones. Today, landline phones, like radio and television, have basically outlived their usefulness, especially among young people. These are some of the conclusions that can be drawn from the study.

The time it takes for a person to start missing infrastructure is short. After electricity (which most people would miss very quickly), interruption to Internet service is most noticeable. About one-third of people would immediately miss Internet access if it was interrupted, while just over half would miss it within one hour. Here again, radio and television come in much farther down the list.

Similarly, people have little patience when waiting for interruptions to service to be rectified. A sixth of all respondents stated that interruptions to electricity, mobile phone or Internet services must be resolved within a maximum of ten minutes, while about half can accept up to a one-hour interruption.

Levels of both dependence and patience differ among the age groups. Nine of ten respondents aged 15-35 years report that they are dependent on both mobile phones and the Internet, while one-third say that they are “extremely dependent”. Two of three respondents aged 23-35 years say that they are not at all dependent on a landline phone.

When asked what would be easiest to do without for a week, respondents said that they could most easily do without public transport, radio and landline phones.

One common aspect of the most in-demand types of infrastructure – electricity, mobile phones and Internet – is that they are also the most vulnerable. Storms and snowstorms severely impact cables and masts, which necessitates a high level of preparedness to quickly bring systems back online after an interruption. As one of Sweden’s leading technology service suppliers responsible for keeping infrastructure online, Relacom wants to use this survey to demonstrate the extent of vulnerability and where in our infrastructure vulnerability is greatest.

“With the combination of cable, fibre and wireless environments, there is a significant need for us as a technology service company to have interdisciplinary expertise, from electricity to IT. We are now increasing the pace of this transition in order to meet the threats to our fragile infrastructure,” says Thomas Körmendi, Relacom CEO.

The survey included questions about attitudes to different types of infrastructure (electricity, telephony, Internet, cars, public transport, radio and television). It was conducted in late February 2013 and included 1,051 respondents across Sweden, between the ages of 15 and 80 years.

 

 

Percentage of respondents who are fairly to extremely dependent on:

Electricity: 97% are dependent. (48% are extremely dependent.)

Mobile phone: 84% are dependent. (17% are extremely dependent.) 

Wired Internet: 81% are dependent. (21% are extremely dependent.)

Car: 66% are dependent. (13% are extremely dependent.)
TV: 60% are dependent. (7% are extremely dependent.)

Public transport: 41% are dependent. (8% are extremely dependent.)
Radio: 39% are dependent. (4% are extremely dependent.)

Landline phone: 35% are dependent. (2% are extremely dependent.)

How quickly would respondents start missing infrastructure in the event of a disruption?:

Electricity: 82% within an hour. (70% immediately.)

Internet: 52% within an hour. (32% immediately.)

Phone: 37% within an hour. (18% immediately.) 

TV: 25% within an hour. (15% immediately.)

Car: 23% within an hour. (18% immediately.)
Radio: 21% within an hour. (13% immediately.)

Public Transport: 16% within an hour. (10% immediately.)

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