Cisco Reveals The Findings Of Its Broadband Survey

Cisco today revealed the findings of its Cisco Broadband Survey where the company took feedback from more than 21,000 people in 12 countries, including 1,000 respondents from the UAE. The survey looked at how consumers use broadband, and what they expect in terms of connectivity, sustainability, and enabling their digital lives.

Key Findings: 

  • 92 percent of UAE consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable broadband connectivity. 
  • 77% of respondents are concerned about the carbon footprint of their broadband.
  • 81% of respondents see broadband as critical national infrastructure. 
  • 62% of respondents rely on their home Internet to work from home or run a business. 
  • 63% of respondents plan to upgrade their Internet service in the next 12 months, mainly looking for speed and security.  

Demand for sustainable broadband 
The survey revealed that consumers in the UAE are willing to opt for more sustainable broadband services: 

  • The survey confirms the heightened environmental consciousness in the UAE: 61% of respondents said they were aware of the Internet’s CO2 footprint. 
  • 77% of respondents expressed concern about the carbon footprint of their broadband.
  • 92 percent of UAE consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable broadband connectivity (assuming the quality remains unchanged). 
Mohammed Tantawi, Managing Director Telcos and Service Providers MEA at Cisco

Mohammed Tantawi, Managing Director Telcos and Service Providers MEA at Cisco commented “With the UAE boasting one of the highest Internet penetration rates in the world, consumers are raising their connectivity aspirations and are increasingly willing to pay extra for a broadband service with a lower carbon footprint. By constantly innovating the technologies of the future and collaborating with service providers, we can help them place sustainability at the forefront of broadband infrastructure development. This entails scaling the infrastructure while efficiently managing energy costs and reducing emissions in line with their sustainability goals.” 

Meeting the needs of a digitally empowered life
In the UAE, consumers are already using connectivity for most aspects of their daily lives. 

  • Critical National Infrastructure: 81% of respondents view broadband as critical national infrastructure, like access to water and electricity. 
  • Hybrid Work: The results of the survey have also shown that remote and hybrid working models are on the rise in the UAE with two-thirds (62%) of UAE respondents now relying on their home Internet to work from home or run a business. This represents a 10% increase compared with last year’s results. 
  • Adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) is widespread among Internet users in UAE. For instance, 46% of UAE respondents already have connected home entertainment (tv, stereo, gaming), and 36% use the Internet to boost home security. Almost 65% see a positive impact on their life thanks to connected home entertainment, health and activity monitors and home security.
Abdelilah Nejjari, Managing Director for the Gulf Region at Cisco

Abdelilah Nejjari, Managing Director for the Gulf Region at Cisco, said “The UAE is among the world’s leading countries in various digital life indexes. Our survey has confirmed that consumers are increasingly relying on the Internet that encompasses every facet of their daily lives. Given the fast expansion of IoT, hybrid work and digitization in general, continued investment must be made to enhance and upgrade the underlying network infrastructure and propel future economic growth across the country.”  

Security must be a top priority  
The survey has shown that consumers are conscious of cyber risks: 

  • Only 3% said they take no measures to protect their home connection. This reinforces findings from Cisco’s 2022 Consumer Security Survey in the UAE, which found that the majority of respondents (73%) are worried about being hacked. 
  • While speed is still the main priority among those planning to upgrade their broadband service in the next year (selected by 44%), security is a close second, ranked by 38% of respondents as a top priority.
  • With many using their home broadband for tasks like banking and working, security is top of mind for consumers. Yet, there is a general lack of awareness on more comprehensive security approaches, with almost half (47%) of respondents only relying on an Internet password to protect their home broadband. About a quarter use more elaborate protection, such as turning on the firewall on their wireless router (27%) and checking for hardware and software updates (26%). 

Commenting on these findings, Abdelilah Nejjari added “The UAE has put cybersecurity at the heart of its digital economy. Today, with the evolution and complexity of cyber-attacks, raising public awareness of online safety and usage of more sophisticated means for protection like multi-factor authentication (MFA), is more important than ever. Cybersecurity needs to go hand in hand with the rapid adoption of digitization in the UAE.”