Saturday, 26 January 2013

Should we be worried about mobile data slowdown?

   A recent report from Deloitte has revealed that owners of Android, Windows Phone and iOS devices consume somewhere around about 35 times the amount of data that a normal phone user would use! This statistic in and of itself isn't too concerning because people with feature phones don't use much data at all, but this statistic becomes concerning when you hear that wireless traffic will supposedly increase 50-fold by the time we reach 2016!

   With this sort of increase in usage Deloitte predicts using our phones won't be the same enjoyable experience it is at the moment. They explained how mobile networks might develop 'rush hours' in much the same way our roads do, in some cases this already happens to your home broadband!

   This sort of network usage would mean that us consumers would often need to give it two or three goes before our phones connect to the people we're calling, we can expect a similar increase in the number of dropped calls we get and when it comes to browsing speeds, they'll plummet and in some cases we might not even be able to load up web pages on the go! Deloitte said:
"In the worst situations, download speeds may be under 1Mbps for lengthy periods of time, making video streaming impossible and even web browsing difficult."
   With that sort of speed we can kiss goodbye to playing the latest YouTube sensation to our friends or downloading an update to Temple Run 6 on the go!

   Hopefully, the new 4G networks will be able to help ease the problems which Deloitte predicts because they're a lot better at managing bandwidth efficiently and they help provide faster speeds.

   Deloitte think that for the foreseeable future that:
    "Demand for wireless bandwidth will likely attempt to outstrip these improvements in supply for at least several years... Major metropolitan areas in some geographies should expect to see continued deterioration in end-user experience."
   In some cases though governments have seen had some kind of solution to this problem. In some cases governments are freeing up some radio spectrum to help ease these sorts of concerns. Here in the UK our 4G auction has literally just got under way! This sort of action is quite rare though and in some cases governments ask that the purchasers of spectrum put their new airways to more specific users: things such as wireless broadband for rural areas are part of the agreements!

   We can see that this could be a problem in some places, but we're not entirely convinced it will be quite as bad as Deloitte predicts, especially not here in the UK and we can't see there being too many issues in either the rest of Europe or North America, but we'll have to wait and see though! Let us know what you think in the comments!
Deloitte Via BBC.


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