African-American Consumer Survey

MyWireless.org® 2012 National Online Survey of African-American Consumers

Research by the Pew Internet Project indicates minority populations are avid users of wireless technology, so we wanted to learn about why and how they use wireless communication so much in their daily lives. We conducted a bipartisan survey of a nationally-representative sample of African American likely voters and got some interesting results back.

Key Findings

  • African-American wireless phone customers, like other groups, are highly satisfied with wireless services and are apprehensive about adding new regulations
  • Like all wireless customers, African-Americans are very price sensitive
  • As a group, they are opposed to adding new regulations and fees
  • They believe that that current competition among wireless carriers provides them with enough choices so they can pick the device, plan, options and content that best fit their needs.

Survey Structure

The survey is divided into 9 sections. Jump to a section or explore the whole survey.

Consumer Lifestyle Back to Top

Other than making or receiving voice calls, which one of the following cellphone features is most important to you?
ReasonTotal18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Texting4348433839463946
Internet Access162017271251715
Taking Pictures114881814715
E-Mail10101111910128
Apps69747174
GPS Navigation30545352
Music21521123
Games23120122
Videos11110011
FM Radio Chip Set0.21000010
Other712491986
Regarding your cellphone service, which one of the following is the most important to you?
Total18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Better value for your service3023292633373227
Improve coverage2729273422242628
Ensuring privacy/security1710141620221320
Access to Internet/Apps152319151241613
Improving cellphone speed59562373
Educate parent/content/minor43527436
Other33115743
If you had to choose one, which one of the following is the most important for you to have?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Cell/Smartphone3940403654503732234335
Broadband Internet2928283629262930323127
Cable/Satellite TV1413131710131516141315
Home Landline Phone131413945918281115
Don’t Know55613693338
Would you consider giving up your home landline phone and only use a cellphone?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Yes3432343752354122233533
No4043393519323053664337
Already Have202019232327231771623
Don’t Know / Refused65856668457


Consumer Satisfaction Back to Top

Overall, are you satisfied or dissatisfied with your cellphone service?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Satisfied9494929593939295959493
Dissatisfied65857773557
Considering the price you pay for your cellphone service and the benefits it provides you, do you consider the value of your cellphone service to be excellent, good, fair or poor?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Excellent/Good7878797974757784807779
Fair/Poor2222202125252316192320


Government Regulations Back to Top

Do you believe adding new government regulations on cellphone service would make your cellphone service better or worse?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Better17221552020915192211
Worse2623282939242826142725
No Difference3129313715254136383329
Don’t Know2625262826312223301834
Do you believe adding new government regulations on cellphone service would make your cellphone service more expensive or less expensive?
More ExpensiveLess ExpensiveNo DifferenceDon’t Know
Total48112219
Urban49111921
Suburban50102416
Rural44162416
18-2954132013
30-4055101620
41-5548122317
56-6545142417
Over 654182626
Men51122513
Women46111925
Under $60K46112319
Over $60K57121913
Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?
“Companies competing for wireless customers give consumers enough choices so they can pick the wireless device, plan, options and content that best fits their needs?”
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Agree8180818480758684788279
Disagree141314151718913121513
Don’t Know675137531038


Applications Back to Top

Wireless carriers have rules that protect the privacy of their customers’ communications and transactions. Do you believe that applications downloaded from all “app” stores – especially services based on your location, should be required to abide by the same set of privacy protections?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Yes8277868787748578858182
No674571245174
Don’t Know13161086141217141114
What type of “apps” do you or would you use most often on your cellphone or other wireless device?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Social Networking2020221636261713102119
GPS/Maps191721209141723301423
Entertainment1112913191713631112
News/Politics91081161011137118
Weather969161081368810
Banking/Finance910897691310810
Sports7685457710112
Education22210612023
Health/Fitness22201102312
Restaurants/Dining12100010411
Other1213138771116181211
Do you use your cellphone to access or manage personal information like bank accounts, membership accounts, account passwords, bills or statements?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomenUnder $60KOver $60K
Yes37354431615144221039353249
No60615568364554768959616649
Don’t Know3321342212431


Digital Downloads Back to Top

How often would you say you purchase online digital downloads such as ringtones, music, videos, games, books, software or apps to your cellphone or other wireless device?
Total18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomenUnder $60KOver $60K
DOWNLOAD63847766493970566168
Everyday719104308668
Once/Twice a Week91720520107812
Once/Twice a Month1417142110717111317
Rarely34303337333235323432
NEVER36152330496129423931
Don’t Know1104101201
Which statement do you agree with more on the issue of taxing the purchases of online digital downloads?
  1. Federal guidelines should establish one fair and consistent set of taxes to apply to purchases of online digital downloads.
  2. Each state should have the right to decide how its state taxes the purchases of online digital downloads, even if it means the consumer could be subject to taxes from multiple jurisdictions for the same purchase.
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Federal5553536441515764606050
State2119271641301414102022
Don’t Know2428202019192922311929


Taxes & Fees Back to Top

From what you know, about what percentage of your monthly cellphone bill is taxes and fees?
Less than 5%5% to 9%10% to 14%15% to 19%20% or moreDon’t knowMean %
Total17291996229.8%
Urban153022762010.0%
Suburban1331161062410.3%
Rural28241593218.4%
18-291632201071510.3%
30-401127251152110.7%
41-5522311584208.8%
56-65162817892210.4%
Over 6518271653318.8%
Men17292295189.8%
Women16291586269.8%
Under $60K19301765239.1%
Over $60K1230231471510.9%
Do you think the tax rate on your monthly cellphone service should be lower, the same or higher than the taxes you pay on general goods and services, which is approximately 7%?
LowerThe SameHigherDon’t Know
Total642728
Urban602947
Suburban632728
Rural752005
18-29513866
30-40573228
41-55761527
56-65642817
Over 656822011
Men642836
Women6325210
Under $60K6227110
Over $60K652844
Would you support or oppose Congress passing a 5-year freeze or moratorium on all new wireless taxes and fees, which would prohibit states and municipalities from raising taxes and fees on wireless services?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomenUnder $60KOver $60K
Support83808687778388848087798286
Oppose66831222777557
Don’t Know121471112149914617137


Parental Controls Back to Top

Are you aware or do you use parental controls or settings offered by wireless carriers that allow parents to limit a child’s cellphone use, a child’s internet access, and texting and downloading?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
YES7979778386807882697879
Aware/Use2523282441322118122524
Aware/Don’t Use5457495945485763575455
NO181819167192015271927
Don’t Know43517123434


Account & Consumer Tools Back to Top

Are you aware or unaware that all major wireless carriers provide voluntary account tools to customers such as notification alerts or updates on your usage to keep you informed and give you the opportunity to access your account and manage your wireless services if needed?
TotalUrbanSuburbanRural18-2930-4041-5556-65Over 65MenWomen
Aware6464636873636561616662
Unaware2929292720253035312829
Don’t know778571255859

Methodology

McLaughlin & Associates partnered with Penn Schoen Berland to develop and conduct a bipartisan national online survey of 400 adult African-American wireless phone users, who are likely voters. The survey was conducted between April 1-6, 2012. All interviews were conducted online. Interview selection was at random within predetermined geographic units. These units were structured to statistically correlate with actual census of the African-American population. The accuracy of the sample of 400 adult African-American wireless phone users, who are likely voters, is within +/- 4.9% at a 95% confidence interval. The survey results in this summary have been rounded and the wording for each question is verbatim from the questionnaire.