Nokia predicts MMS boom


8 May 2003

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Nokia today announced its latest market research on MMS (multimedia messaging service) which finds the majority of respondents to be keen on the technology. Not surprisingly, the company is one of the biggest vendors of MMS-enabled handsets.

The report on perceptions of existing and future MMS-based mobile services in the UK, Japan, the US, Germany, Singapore and Finland was conducted in co-operation with the HPI Research Group and found that the majority of respondents are excited by it.

The majority of UK respondents – three quarters – regard MMS as exciting. Nokia said that the positive expectations of users in the UK and other surveyed countries mirror actual mobile multimedia usage trends in Japan where these services are more developed than in the UK and the other four countries surveyed.

Among the report’s findings on UK perceptions was that the potential of downloadable picture-based services is greater than previously thought. UK respondents expressed great interest in downloadable services such as travel information, news, games and screensavers. The study suggests that the popularity of these MMS-based services will capture traditional media spend for specific services – eg breaking news, travel, weather reports – from television, the internet and other media.

Among the Japanese respondents, over 90pc of camera phone owners send multimedia messages to other camera phones; while only 68pc send to email accounts. For those sending MMS, it is important that they feel the recipient is able to open the image and share the moment immediately.

“Consumers really want MMS and, as operators are already discovering, people are as intrigued by and eager to use MMS as SMS [short messaging service]. What’s really interesting is how MMS looks set to broaden mobile communications use as a whole and support the creation of new kinds of picture content services,” said Pekka Pohjakallio, director of mobile internet solutions at Nokia Networks. “The depth of demand for MMS services is extremely good news for the industry and creates a consumer pull for more advanced 3G-based services,” he added.

By Dick O’Brien