The portability, ease of use and features of smartphones and media tablets have raised the bar when it comes to mobile device users’ expectations of an ideal set of features. With smartphones and tablets crammed full of features such as photo and video cameras, GPS, touchscreens, Web connectivity, native apps and speakerphones, just what do consumers consider an ideal feature set today?

That’s what In-Stat researchers set out to discover during a recently concluded research project. As it turned out, 75% of respondents included 4G in such a set.

There’s a good deal of confusion and a lack of understanding among consumers regarding 4G, however, In-Stat found.

“Although 4G is an important feature for handset buyers, there is a lot of confusion surrounding 4G,” In-Stat analyst Greg Potter noted. “When survey respondents were asked which carrier offered the fastest 4G speeds, the majority of the respondents either didn’t know or felt they were the same across carriers.”

Additional findings in In-Stat’s, “Next-Generation Phones: Consumer Insights Drive Future Handset Designs” report include:

  • Consumers are identifying more with their mobile operating systems (OS). Thirty-six percent said they will only consider one phone OS as compared to the 23% who said so in 2010.
  • More than 20% of T-Mobile users responding to the survey said they were planning on switching carriers in the next 12 months.
  • More than 40% said they have no interest at all in using a Near-Field Communications (NFC) payment system.
  • The percentage of respondents who said they were “willing” or “might be willing” to pay for Bluetooth is declining, having fallen from 45% in 2006 to 35% this year.

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