4 Jun 2014

wefi Quarterly Analytics Report Finds Increased Wi-Fi Offloading and Speed in Wi-Fi and Cellular Networks

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FAIRFAX, VA--(Marketwired - Jun 4, 2014) - wefi, the market leader in mobile experience and network analytics, today announced key findings from its Quarterly Wi-Fi Analytics Report focused on insights and trends from Q1 2014. wefi found carriers offloading Wi-Fi in nearly 80 percent of all US states, an increase of 2-3 percent compared to Q4 2013. Additionally, a deeper view into consumption trends found that entertainment apps Netflix, Vine, Spotify, ESPN and Instagram continue to drive the highest data use. These insights are based on data gathered from millions of mobile devices in the United States enabled with wefi software.

Highlights from the wefi Q1 2014 Wi-Fi Analytics Report include the following:

  • Most states, with the exception of Connecticut and Florida, averaged above 92 percent in Wi-Fi offloading.
  • Wi-Fi offloading increased by 90 percent from 4 states in the first quarter of 2013 to 41 states in the first quarter of 2014 -- with an average of 94 percent Wi-Fi offloading in these 41 states.
  • In the first quarter of 2014, wefi found Snapchat speeds blew past Facebook on every metric, including per state and in-state comparisons. For example, in Manhattan, users of Snapchat experienced a nearly 106 percent increase in Mbps whereas Facebook user speeds fell by nearly 81 percent.

"Facebook has been optimized for easy sharing of rich media which entails the uploading and downloading of larger content files. This requires more bandwidth which may affect users' speeds," said David Fishman, wefi CMO. "In contrast, content shared on Snapchat is much smaller in size and once viewed, is not stored, requiring less bandwidth and resulting in faster user speeds."

Q1 2014 Wi-Fi Analytics Report Points to Continued Growth in Nationwide Data Offloading
Consumers have come to recognize that Wi-Fi connectivity presents a superior experience compared to consuming content via cellular networks. This, coupled with devices that automatically sense and log users into Wi-Fi networks when they are present, contributes to the growing use of Wi-Fi and the overall rise in Wi-Fi offloading nationwide.

The Q1 2014 Wi-Fi Analytics Report found that offloading continues to be a key strategy employed by carriers nationwide. Specifically:

  • The top five states with the highest Wi-Fi offloading rates were Utah (99 percent), New Mexico (98 percent), Arkansas (98 percent), Vermont (98 percent) and Maine (97 percent). Of note, New Mexico and Utah were the only states that kept their position in the top 5 Wi-Fi offloading list from Q4 of 2013.
  • Across the Eastern United States where cellular services are more pervasive, Wi-Fi offloading was also more robust with carriers offloading 82 percent more data than those represented across the Western United States.
  • Wi-Fi and cellular networks were faster in Q1 2014 compared to the same time last year (based on average of states with the top 5 fastest speeds):
    • Wi-Fi networks were 27 percent faster in Q1 2014 with an average speed of 5.3 Mbps compared to Q1 2013 with an average speed of 4.2 Mbps. Massachusetts, Maryland, Iowa, Illinois and Connecticut clocked in with the fastest Wi-Fi connections this quarter.
    • Cellular networks were 62 percent faster in Q1 2014 with an average speed of 4.7 Mbps compared to Q1 2013 which had an average speed of 2.9 Mbps (based on the average of states with the top 5 fastest speeds in Q1 2014 compared to Q1 2013 respectively). New Hampshire, Missouri, Maine, Louisiana and Kansas clocked in as the top five states with the fastest cellular connections this quarter.
  • The report also found that ESPN, Instagram, Netflix, Spotify and Vine maintained their positions as the top five most downloaded applications.

wefi's Quarterly Wi-Fi Analytics Report includes national statistics related to wireless Internet including cellular data offloading onto Wi-Fi networks, amount of data being uploaded and downloaded, average Wi-Fi and cellular data speeds, and mobile application data usage.

"The proliferation of smart mobile devices with built-in broadband capabilities has marked a transformation in how consumers use their devices. Today's consumers have an insatiable demand for connected smart mobile devices, generating rising amounts of mobile data consumption via Wi-Fi," said wefi CEO Zur Feldman. "To address this growing demand for more data and more bandwidth, network carriers can offload users from their 3G/4G network to Wi-Fi networks to add more capacity in a more affordable and flexible way."