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Me and you and everyone we know: an empirical analysis of local network effects in mobile communications

Author

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  • Nicoletta Corrocher

    () (CESPRI, Bocconi University, Milan, Italy)

  • Lorenzo Zirulia

    () (University of Bologna, CESPRI, Bocconi University, Milan and The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis, Rimini, Italy)

Abstract

This paper aims at investigating the importance that consumers assign to local network effects (i.e. the extent to which they take into account their contacts' operators in determining their choices) and at identifying which individual characteristics affect consumers' preferences in relation to local network effects. Based on a sample of 193 Italian students, we find that consumers are highly heterogeneous with respect to the evaluation of the importance of their friend/family’s operator when choosing their own provider, and that such heterogeneity is associated to specific characteristics related to individual innovativeness and patterns of mobile phone usage. In particular, consumers who are more interested in local network effects are typically sophisticated users, who use intensively voice services and who are early adopters. Interestingly, consumers who pay attention to local network effects end up spending relatively little in proportion to their intensity of use.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicoletta Corrocher & Lorenzo Zirulia, 2008. "Me and you and everyone we know: an empirical analysis of local network effects in mobile communications," Working Paper series 03_08, Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis.
  • Handle: RePEc:rim:rimwps:03_08
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Sobolewski, Maciej & Czajkowski, Mikołaj, 2018. "Receiver benefits and strategic use of call externalities in mobile telephony markets," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 16-27.
    2. Muck, Johannes, 2012. "The effect of on-net / off-net differentiation and heterogeneuous consumers on network size in mobile telecommunications : an agent-based aporoach," 23rd European Regional ITS Conference, Vienna 2012 60355, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    3. Liangjie Zhao & Wenqi Duan, 2014. "Simulating the Evolution of Market Shares: The Effects of Customer Learning and Local Network Externalities," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 43(1), pages 53-70, January.
    4. Karacuka, Mehmet & Çatık, A. Nazif & Haucap, Justus, 2013. "Consumer choice and local network effects in mobile telecommunications in Turkey," Telecommunications Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 334-344.
    5. Guven, Faruk, 2018. "Churn and loyalty behaviour of Turkish digital natives," 29th European Regional ITS Conference, Trento 2018 184943, International Telecommunications Society (ITS).
    6. Zucchini, Leon & Claussen, Jörg & Trüg, Moritz, 2013. "Tariff-mediated network effects versus strategic discounting: Evidence from German mobile telecommunications," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 751-759.
    7. Lucio Fuentelsaz & Juan Pablo Maicas & Yolanda Polo, 2012. "Switching Costs, Network Effects, and Competition in the European Mobile Telecommunications Industry," Information Systems Research, INFORMS, vol. 23(1), pages 93-108, March.
    8. Rebeca Escobar Briones, 2018. "Impacto de las modificaciones en el proceso de portabilidad numérica sobre los servicios de telecomunicación móvil/The impact on telecommunications services of modifications to mobile number portabili," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 33(1), pages 3-28.
    9. Andreas Deckert & Robert Klein, 2014. "Simulation-based optimization of an agent-based simulation," Netnomics, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 33-56, July.

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