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Mobile data traffic increased 40-fold in three years, says Ofcom report

Jenny Williams

With over a quarter (27%) of adults and almost half (47%) of teenagers owning a smartphone, the use of mobile data services has accelerated, Ofcom has said in a report.

A report by Ofcom, titled "Communications Market Report", said the use of mobile data services has increased "40-fold" over a three-year period.

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"The recent adoption of smartphones has been accompanied by an increase in the volume of mobile data transferred over the UK's mobile networks. This increased 40-fold between 2007 and 2010," said the report.

In addition, Ofcom said by May 2011 around 500,000 UK households had adopted superfast broadband with a speed of 30Mbps or higher, marking a "five-fold increase" from 2010.

The report showed 27% of UK adults accessed the internet on their mobile phones at the start of 2011, up from 22% in 2010. Visiting social networking sites was the most popular activity beyond sending and receiving e-mails.

The growth of mobile caused the number of mobile voice minutes to rise by 250% over the past 10 years. The number of text messages sent has grown by 2,000% in the same period.

The report said 37% of adult users admitted they were "highly addicted" to their smartphones, which has blurred work and social time.

"Smartphone users are more likely to take part in work calls while on holiday or annual leave, with a quarter (24%) admitting to doing so regularly, compared with just 16% of ordinary mobile phone users," said Ofcom in the report.

The report showed total telecoms sales fell by 2% in 2010. Mobile sales increased by 1% while fixed voice and broadband sales declined 3% and 6% respectively.

 


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