The Decline Of The Dongle: Phones And Tablets Are Winning Out

Consumer intent to buy a mobile broadband dongle has halved from 14 percent to seven percent in the last year, says YouGov’s DongleTrack poll.

This includes dongles, modem sticks, data cards, netbooks and laptops with integrated mobile broadband. When they first came to market in 2008, that was 20 percent.

We have already recently been hearing of slowing netbook sales, as tablet sales take off and smartphone sales outweigh PC sales.

“The relative demise of the dongle is primarily due to the emergence of smartphones and newer access devices such as tablets,” YouGov says. “Products that are easier to use, more intuitive and more keenly priced are rapidly driving online internet access.”

Amongst consumers who have both a smartphone and a dongle, 43 percent use their smartphone more often, just six percent use their dongle more often.

YouGov’s Russell Feldman: “The dongle-based broadband market still has a loyal, often business–focussed user base but, with an increase in Wi-Fi availability and the emergence of competing access devices that offer greater portability, it is likely that the dongle will continue to decline in relative importance.”