San Ramon, Calif. – Almost 40 percent of all U.S broadband households with a Wi-Fi network have experienced or currently experience Wi-Fi problems, and a majority of them would be willing to use existing coaxial cables or power lines to carry network traffic and improve network performance, a Parks Associates survey contends.
The survey was commissioned by the Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA), which promotes technology that sends network traffic over a home’s coaxial cables.
Among households experiencing problems, 87 percent have experienced slow connections or dead zones, and 63 percent continue to experience these problems despite efforts to fix them, Parks said. That means 15 million households experience dead zones or slow wireless connections despite upgrading their Internet service or getting new equipment such as a router, Parks said.
More than half of respondents who have experienced wireless network problems would be “very comfortable” using a wired solution to improve performance, Parks said. Comfortable equates to a rating in the survey of five to seven on a seven-point scale. A total of 58 percent said they would be comfortable using their existing coax cable to improve performance, and 56 percent said they would be comfortable using power line technology. Fifty-two percent would be comfortable installing Ethernet/CAT-5 wiring.
“Many consumers experience poor home network performance and congestion problems, and the number will increase as the number of Internet-connected devices in the home climbs,” said John Barrett, director of consumer analytics for Parks. “Wired solutions are appealing options for resolving these problems.”
Said MoCa president Charles Cerino, “The willingness by the end user to seek out and use a wired solution for their home network confirms what we have been saying all along—you still need a wire to do the heavy lifting for complete and comprehensive connectivity.”
The survey also found that:
• 28 percent of respondents experiencing wireless network problems have considered using Ethernet/Cat-5 wiring, and 27 percent have considered using their electrical wiring or existing coax wiring.
• 97 percent of respondents with a home larger than 3,000 square feet said they have considered using a wired option compared to 25 percent of consumers whose homes are 2,000 square feet or smaller.
“Consumers’ comfort with wired solutions signals an opportunity for industry players,” said Jennifer Kent, Parks’ director of research quality and product development. The industry has focused most of its attention on consumers’ demand for networking mobility, but there remains a need for wired solutions that can address performance issues.”
The findings are based on a survey of 1,000 U.S. home-network owners in households with broadband Internet access. All respondents were heads-of-household ages 18 and older.
MoCA technology has been adopted by cable, telco/IPTV and satellite operators worldwide to distribute their content throughout the house, but MoCA technology is also used to extend Wi-Fi connectivity within the home.