Almost ninety per cent of Australians are not "completely happy" with their internet connection, according to the first Juniper Global Bandwidth report.
With the lowest customer satisfaction of the nine countries surveyed, consumers in Australia cited mobile data plans and connection speed as the top two reasons currently restricting them from fully utilising their mobile connectivity capabilities.
The report explores differences between how people use mobile Internet connectivity in their day-to-day lives at work and at home and what they hope to achieve using their connected devices in the future.
The report compares nine emerging and developed countries, including 500 respondents in Australia.
The study reveals that for people in developing countries, connected devices are often a tool for personal advancement and self-improvement, while in the developed world, the focus is much more on convenience and efficiency.
For example, Australians want more convenience and the ability to do more through their mobile device or home internet connection in the next 3-5 years including receiving intelligent push notifications (42 percent) and managing smart home technologies (40 percent).
Australians are also juggling more devices with 49 percent having five or more connectable devices at home, equal with the United Kingdom as the most devices of all countries surveyed.
Here, 73 percent of Australians have one or more connectivity complaint and 89 percent aren’t completely satisfied with the speed of their current connection.
According to the study, nearly twice as many people in developing countries regularly use connected devices for educational purposes as those in developed markets.
Further, 46 percent of people in developing countries use connected devices for professional development versus 27 percent in developed markets.
In developed nations, on the other hand, people are more likely to use connected devices for practical day-to-day activities like banking (51 percent), shopping (41 percent) and searching for local information (42 percent).
Juniper Networks commissioned the independent firm Wakefield Research to survey 5,500 adults in developed markets, comprising Australia, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States, which are typically moving quickly to implement high bandwidth Long Term Evolution (LTE) networks capable of delivering mobile services up to 100 times faster than older networks.
Wakefield also sampled consumers in emerging markets,comprising Brazil, China, India and South Africa, where networks tend to be slower and less reliable.
Ninety-seven percent of people in emerging markets reported fundamental life changes due to connectivity, including a transformation in the way they complete a wide range of essential and everyday tasks, from banking to accessing local information, enjoying entertainment, receiving health care and engaging in civic life.
This is compared to 22 percent of consumers in developed markets, or 29 percent of consumers in Australia, who report that connectivity has not had a significant effect on their lives.
Forty percent of respondents in emerging markets report that connectivity has improved their earning power, compared with just 17 percent in developed markets.
While, 60 percent of consumers in emerging markets believe that connectivity has transformed their social lives, compared with 38 percent in the developed countries.
The report found 39 percent of people in developing nations surveyed had experienced a significant transformation in their access to education thanks to connectivity.
In developed countries, that number is less than half.
In India, for example, 45 percent of people surveyed say that connectivity has fundamentally changed how they access textbooks, complete coursework or use teaching tools, compared with twenty-one percent in Australia.
Looking to the future, more than half of consumers in emerging countries would like to have more access to educational resources compared to less than one-quarter in developed countries.
Despite the positives, the majority of individuals in emerging markets report they have missed personal and professional opportunities as a result of connectivity challenges.
Overall, 60 percent of consumers in emerging markets cited connection speed as the most common problem (compared with 27 percent in developed countries).
Further, 30 percent of people in emerging markets stated that simply finding a connection remains an issue (compared to just 13 percent in developed nations).
Juniper Networks managing director A/NZ, Nathan McGregor, said Australia there was certainly evidence in the report for service providers to take note of.
"The better the connectivity the more sensitive customers were to interruptions in service," he said.
"As high-speed connectivity becomes the norm across Australia, service providers will need to move quickly into application development and services personalisation to attract new customers and ensure retention.”