Mobile music rises while Google competes with Apple Maps


New research gives overview into how people are using their mobile data

Mobile music is a rising trend in mobile phone data usage, while four apps generate the majority of all data traffic on iOS devices, according to a new report.

Mobile audio, with internet radio in particular, is an emerging category in mobile data volume, showed the Citrix ByteMobile Mobile Analytics Report. Mobile audio represents 12% of mobile data volume in North America and 4% outside of the region.

Mobile audio, especially music, is identified as an emerging category of mobile data that now constitutes a meaningful percentage of overall data traffic, the report noted. Of the total volume of mobile audio measured over the period, internet radio constitutes the vast majority.

The recent announcement by Apple of iTunes Radio suggests that internet radio will continue its strong growth, as iTunes Radio traffic adds to that driven by popular applications such as Spotify and Pandora, said the report.

Additionally, mobile search per subscriber has increased 25% since February 2012. Four apps – Media Player, Safari, App Store and Facebook – generate 82% of mobile data volume on iOS devices.

Mobile subscribers are using mobile search more than ever before, indicating higher levels of web interaction while on the go. The report reveals that 97% of mobile search data volume is generated by three apps, namely Google, Yahoo and Bing.

In a recent study by Google, the search engine found that 82% of shoppers with smartphones use mobile search to help them make in-store purchase decisions, concluding that in-store mobile activity begins with search rather than shopping apps.

When it comes to the top mobile apps, four apps generate 82% of mobile data volume on iOS devices – Media Player, Safari, App Store and Facebook, with Media Player accounting for nearly half. These top four apps also generate 52% of mobile data transactions.

Accounting for 1% of mobile transactions, the eBay app now generates enough traffic to be a significant mobile data contributor and has become the first ecommerce app to pass the 1% threshold. Facebook has also risen in prominence since February 2012 when it generated 1% of data volume. Facebook now accounts for 5% of data volume.

Finally, the report showed that Google Maps is preferred over Apple Maps on iOS devices throughout most of the world. On a worldwide basis, Google Maps usage on Apple devices surpasses that of Apple's own map application, with Google Maps generating a slight majority of mobile map data volume. Apple holds an edge in the Americas with the North American market, in particular, preferring Apple Maps over Google Maps at 63% to 37% respectively. Google Maps dominates the rest of the world, with Google Maps preference, peaking at 80% in the Asia Pacific region.

'The Mobile Analytics Report findings serve as an essential resource for operators to discover how subscribers are using mobile devices and what applications consume the most data,' said Chris Koopmans, vice president and general manager of Service Provider Platforms, Citrix. 'For example, the report found that 82 percent of mobile video entertainment traffic is generated by YouTube.  Interestingly, operators typically make little or no revenue from this traffic beyond that associated with data usage. The real world data presented in this report validates the need for network operators to improve subscribers' mobile experience in order to distinguish their service offerings and better monetise the increase in traffic volume.'

The findings in the Citrix ByteMobile Mobile Analytics Report are generated from Smart Capacity Mobile Analytics, the company's mobile data traffic reporting solution. The Mobile Analytics Report anonymously sources data traffic statistics from the 3G and 4G networks of the Citrix ByteMobile global tier one customer base and provides insight into the current state of the mobile ecosystem.


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