Mobile operators may want to carefully monitor the number of tablet users they have using their wireless network. According to a new study from video optimization firm Bytemobile, tablet users drive three times more mobile data traffic than smartphone users. According to the study, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad users browse 33 Web pages per session, generating about 160 percent more mobile Web usage per session than iPhone users.
The Bytemobile report noted that operators might want to watch this trend, particularly as adoption of tablets by both consumers and enterprises accelerates. Forrester Research estimates one-third of U.S adults will own a tablet by 2016. Of course, not all those tablets will necessarily be connected to the cellular network.
The Bytemobile report also provided some interesting insights into consumer mobile video usage. The report found that YouTube is the most frequently visited source for mobile video and YouTube sessions are longer than other video sessions. For example a YouTube session typically lasts for 8.5 minutes while a Vevo session lasts just over eight minutes.
The company also found that slower networks result in lower resolution video. On average a mobile network with a bit rate of 300 Kbps delivers 74 percent of requested videos at 240p resolution. Anna Yong, product marketing manager of Bytemobile's Mobile Analytics, said that this stat is important because it shows that consumers on slower speed networks will get lower quality video, which may indicate need for carriers to consider optimization or caching technologies to help improve quality.
Bytemobile compiles its analytics report quarterly from anonymous sources within the company's 3G and 4G wireless operator customer base.
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