When 4G hits the UK we could see retail boosted by £1.8bn, according to research from eBay and Conlumino.
The super-fast broadband will encourage more shopping on smartphones and tablets, eBay reckons, and more purchases made generally thanks to better internet connectivity.
The study found that one in two UK shoppers find the internet on the mobiles slow and unreliable, which is a major bug bear when shopping on their smartphones.
Mobile retail is a fast-growing trend that is creating a much-needed stimulus to the battered industry. Last year Visa Europe predicted that half of all its transactions would be made via mobile by 2020. Sales through mobile phones hit £7.5bn in 2012, according to internet trade body IMRG.
“Retailers today must take every chance to engage consumers, inspiring them and giving them every possible opportunity to buy and interact with their brands,” Conlumino’s Neil Saunders said. “With universal 4G on the horizon, retailers can’t afford to stand still.”
eBay Europe senior director of m-commerce Olivier Ropars said: “The arrival of universal 4G will bring with it a more immersive, instant and intimate shopping experience than ever before. It won’t just turbo-charge the way we shop. It will truly give us the ability to shop anytime, anywhere. Retailers must act now and think about the virtual shop window, to turn this huge opportunity into an exciting reality.”
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