CTIA: 123% annual data traffic growth underscores spectrum crunch

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U.S. wireless customers love their data, which is precisely why the industry needs more spectrum, according to the CTIA. The trade group's semi-annual survey of service providers showed that wireless data traffic grew by 123 percent in one year, registering 866.7 billion MB at the end of December 2011 vs. 388 billion MB a year earlier. Helping drive that consumption was a 43 percent increase in the number of active smartphones and wireless-enabled PDAs during the same period, with 111.5 million of the devices in use at the end of 2011. CTIA said mobile providers' capital expenditures rose 2 percent during 2011 to $25.3 billion. Since 2001, wireless providers have invested $246 billion in capex. Article