Just last week (Oct. 14), the Federal Communications Commission announced its new “bill shock” plan, which requires wireless carriers to begin alerting users once they have exceeded or are about to exceed voice, text or data usage.
Last May, ForeSee Results reported that online customer satisfaction has been on the rise. Satisfaction levels with computer and electronics e-tailers, for example, went up from 74 to 78 percent between 2009 and 2010. A big reason why consumers enjoy shopping online is because it is simple and convenient. Another reason? Consumers often don’t want to be “sold to” by overeager salespeople.
Verizon Wireless announced Sunday that it would pay up to $90 million in refunds to 15 million cellphone customers who were wrongly charged for data or Intenet use, making it one of the largest customer refunds in telecommunications history, reported Edward Wyatt of the New York Times (Oct. 3).
Roger Cheng, of the Wall Street Journal, reported last Friday (Oct. 1) that Microsoft will be formally unveiling a lineup of smartphones using the revamped version of its mobile operating system on Oct. 11. AT&T will subsequently begin offering the new phones four weeks later, he added.
BlackBerry maker Research In Motion unveiled its first tablet computer last Monday (Sept. 27) at a developers’ conference in San Francisco. “But in a return to its roots, the company said that the new device, the BlackBerry PlayBook, would be aimed mainly at business users,” wrote Ian Austen of the New York Times (Sept. 28).
Consumers’ frequent use of sites like Facebook and Twitter, particularly via smartphone, makes social networks ideal places for retailers to generate word-of-mouth referrals. In June, Experian Simmons reported that two-thirds of U.S. Internet-connected consumers visit social networks (a 230 percent jump from 20 percent penetration in 2007), and 43 percent of respondents visit these site more than once a day.
2010 has been a watershed year for mobile commerce. It seems like everywhere you turn, you’re seeing or hearing something about how shopping and mobile technology have collided. Things like Foursquare, shopping apps, and mobile coupons are becoming more accessible, due to both increased smartphone adoption (IDC: Smartphone Sales to Jump 55% in 2010) and companies’ willingness to send consumers deals directly to their phones.