Wi-Fi usage on smartphones growing, tablets replacing TVs

Wi-Fi usage on smartphones growing, tablets replacing TVs

Summary: Smartphone owners may be getting ready for all carriers to switch to tiered data plans as Wi-Fi usage is increasing, and tablets are keeping TVs turned off.


Smartphone owners may be getting ready for all carriers to switch to tiered data plans like Verizon, as the June report from Millenial Media indicates. Wi-Fi usage on smartphones showed an 8 percent growth over the previous month for getting online while mobile. A new study segment that tracks how tablet usage impacts existing activities for owners shows that a full 19 percent of tablet owners report they watch less TV than before getting the tablet.

Apple is still the number one smartphone in Millenial Media's report with over 30 percent of the impression share and Samsung retains the second position with 14.94 percent of impressions served to phones from that vendor. RIM is number three and HTC owns the number four spot. The only surprising number in this month's reports is that Samsung's Nexus S moved into the fourth position on the top 20 list, taking the second most popular spot on the list of Android handsets.

This month's report from Millenial includes a new segment that follows tablet owners and how buying one impacts behavior. Analysts have been claiming that tablet purchases impact PC purchases, so this study of tablet owners is particularly interesting. Nearly a third of tablet owners admit that they have shifted some common online activities from other devices to the tablet. They also admit that in addition to replacing an eReader, for 19 percent of them the tablet sees them watching less TV than they did before getting the tablet. These slates may be having a greater impact on user behavior than previously thought.

Topics: Mobility, Hardware, Networking, Smartphones, Wi-Fi

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  • RE: Wi-Fi usage on smartphones growing, tablets replacing TVs

    Well, duuuh.

    Why waste the 3G bandwidth when I can use the WiFi for free? I'd gladly sacrifice the battery for saved cash.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
  • RE: Wi-Fi usage on smartphones growing, tablets replacing TVs

    Wifi is usually more effecient on battery usage than 3G is because it is tranmitting shorter distances.
    I think the providers (AT&, Verizone, T-mobile (for how long we don't know) may be making a mistake in this economy by getting a little too greedy. If they are really protecting their Networks from overutilization, then they are justified. If they are just getting greedy, they may find that many customers just utilize the base plans and augment with WiFi (this may be an opportunity for cable providers in Cities to step in and sell Hot-Spot access to various users/businesses).
  • Where did it say that tablets are replacing TV's? Have TV sales dropped?

    or are they just playing an hour more of Angry birds before putting the tablet down to watch TV?

    Given the choice of reruns or sitting there staring at a wall, many people will watch the rerun. Give the choice of reruns or doing something more fun, people will usually pick the thing that's more fun.

    It's nothing different then what has come before, it's just another medium offered to people to play with.
    William Pharaoh
  • RE: Wi-Fi usage on smartphones growing, tablets replacing TVs

    I use WiFi all the time at home on my Droid. Not because of any data plan limits (I'll never reach those), but because it's just plain faster.
  • RE: Wi-Fi usage on smartphones growing, tablets replacing TVs

    Usage is rising because it's cheaper and faster than your carriers package. For instance, if you're a mobile office worker, your bill is now going to get sky high for data usage. You are limited to your carriers data speeds instead of what the device is capable of. Look at services like AT&T with it's 200 text messages a month included and .05 for each additional text over the 200. Thanks to jailbreaking our devices, we now have apps that will block our carriers data connection in exchange for your own connections. Awww, there goes all that pile of money no one has anymore to fork out for ridiculous charges on a phone. I'd rather use one of the ever increasingly available hotspots or my own home to use data services than pay through the nose with body parts for overages set by my carrier. PLUS I have a faster, more reliable connection than what my carrier can provide. If I'm out in the city or at home with 1 bar reception I wouldn't even attempt to use a carriers data service for fear of data relay delays due to reception. Why would people want to spend say $800 for that ipad2 with cellular then be jabbed up the a** for data service just to USE the device? 2 gigs of traffic goes pretty quickly when your a mobile office user with attachments. Don't forget about All that precious advertising, that costs us mobile users, we have no choice BUT to view it, and eat up my data usage while it downloads to show on my device. A few k here, few k there ads up when you do it daily.

    So does this mean I can now start sending a bill to advertising agencies that display ads on my mobile devices that I will now pay more for in data usages? After all I am technically paying my carrier more money to see that garbage on my phone that i didnt ask for or install but is all over my browser or or installed by the manufacturer.

    Sounds like it's a big conspiracy here..
    Mobile carriers: We want to make more money with our mobile users that are already broke or hard up or close to going out of business.

    Advertising Agency: No Problem! we just flood ads on their devices that eat up that 2g standard traffic. We'll stagger it to take a whole month to use the 2 gigs. so your customers will be paying you extra anyways for anything they do on that device besides talk on the phone.

    Mobile Carrier: GREAT Bob! Lets do it!
  • Tablets vs. TVs

    I do have to laugh when one of my friends brags about sitting at home watching a TV show or movie on his tablet. I'm thinking I had a better experience with my 108" home theatre. Sure, if you're stuck with your kids at piano lessons, they will watch Netflix on the phone, but otherwise, I think I'm missing the allure of a tiny screen.
    A Gray
  • oh really

    I watch 95% less commercial TV due to wi-fi access to other programing like netflix, amazon, etc.

    I have an iPad and rarely watch anythibng that takes up a lot of gigs when I am not at home. If I am at phone and have a 42 inch TV and a couple of them, doesn't make sense to watch on iPad what I could watch on the big screen.