Smartphone owners are increasingly switching from Wi-Fi to 4G signals at home, with 65% of mobile phone usage now occurring indoors, according to new research.
The report, from network testing company GWS, estimates that as many as 40 per cent of British smartphone users now routinely plump for 4G over Wi-Fi owing to poor mobile broadband reception, particularly in extremities of the home such as bedrooms.
The study found that while 16 percent of respondents could connect to home wi-fi, the connection speed was so slow that they opted for data instead.
This means that 13 percent of Brits never connect their mobile devices to home wi-fi.
GWS also found that EE was the most reliable network for indoor 4G access inside the London properties tested, with access available 85 percent of the time. O2 and Vodafone followed with 91 percent and 87 percent, with Three trailing at 55 percent.
The most popular tasks undertaken using data, by 57 percent of respondents, were social media applications such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Data was used for messaging apps by 52 percent, while it was used for internet shopping and mobile games by 46 and 41 percent respectively. 40 percent used data for working from home.
Paul Carter, CEO of GWS, commented: “Most major network operators offer their customers voice-over-wi-fi services as a temporary solution to in-home blackspots, but as our poll shows, wi-fi connectivity in British homes is often too slow or patchy for consumers to reliably access the Internet.
“These same wi-fi issues will affect consumers hoping to use voice-over-wi-fi to make calls at home.
“Today’s Brit is adept at switching between wi-fi and mobile data to stay connected while they are out and about, but they shouldn’t have to use the same tricks to get online at home. We are using our phones more than ever, and we expect to be able to work, play and shop on our phones while we are at home.”
The report, conducted by OnePoll, polled 2000 UK adults in February. GWS conducted testing at 50 London homes to assess network strength.