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SMBs are adopting 4G too slowly, moans Vodafone

Mobile operator urges businesses to upgrade networks, as survey reveals 64% aren't on 4G

Small businesses are lagging behind larger firm's 4G adoption rate, according to Vodafone.

Just 24 per cent of SMBs use 4G, compared to 39 per cent of larger firms, demonstrate results from a YouGov survey commissioned by the mobile operator.

Phil Mottram, Vodafone UK enterprise director, said that a combination of cost and a lack of knowledge is preventing businesses from taking advantage of the service.

"Businesses need to be ready to take advantage of the tools and technologies that can give them the competitive edge today and in the future," he said. "Now is the time for those businesses which are yet to invest in 4G to do so and to start benefitting from its full potential."

Of 1,200 respondents, 64 per cent are not currently using 4G and 41 per cent have no current plans to adopt it at all.

"While the perception of cost is still stopping businesses from taking the step towards 4G, the significant knowledge gap of what it can offer UK businesses is a challenge," Mottram added.

"Despite the growing availability and affordability of 4G devices and services, the lack of a true understanding of the benefits that the technology can bring, as revealed by this survey, is undeniably holding enterprises back from reaping the rewards of introducing 4G to their business."

However, he also acknowledged that network providers like Vodafone are partly responsible for informing customers about 4G.

"To help decision makers see the viable business case in upgrading to 4G, Vodafone is committed to helping businesses understand how 4G can benefit them based on their business functions, needs and priorities using the greater speed and capacity that 4G can provide."

The results arrived as YouTube watchers help to push 4G traffic above 3G usage for EE, the largest 4G network in the UK.

Data usage in areas such as Scotland have risen by up to 60 per cent, with 10 million now signed up to EE's 4G service, the network claimed. YouTube accounts for 67 per cent of video streaming traffic.

Vodafone is devoting 1 billion into upgrades, expanding its 4G coverage to over 500 cities and towns across the UK this year.

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