iPads Hungry for Data

Mobile network data demand on iPads has grown four fold in the last six months, according to new research from Actix, which provides software that enables operators to run more effective mobile networks.

The iPad 2 and iPad 3 rand 6th and 7th in the list of the most data-hungry devices, consuming three times as much mobile data as the average smartphone. Actix notes that the current wave of its research is the first time any tablet has been amongst the top 10 ranking devices.

“The easy availability of iPads with a mobile network contract is now impacting growth in data demand on the mobile networks, as users demand a connection wherever they are and whatever the device,” said Actix marketing director, Neil Coleman. “This is the second phase in the mobile data revolution started by the iPhone in 2007 and impacts on mobile network operators’ ability to deliver an effective subscriber experience.”

As data demand increases, greater strain is placed on the mobile network, particularly the Radio Access Network (RAN), the increasingly complex infrastructure between the subscriber’s handset and the core network. Actix data reveals that 85 per cent of all current customer experience problems occur in the RAN.

“Unless operators are able to understand how subscribers are using the network, where and with which devices, the growth in demand for mobile data will lead to more dropped data sessions and go-slows,” said Coleman. “Only with accurate data on people, places and devices can real insight be gained to maximize coverage and capacity where it is needed most, to deliver the best subscriber experience possible.”