AT&T’s assertion of leading wireless data traffic on its network faces a challenge. According to a recent ABI Research report, Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel surpassed AT&T in handling data traffic last year. The report highlighted that both Verizon and Sprint carried over 16 billion more megabytes of mobile network data compared to AT&T in 2009. Together, Verizon and Sprint accounted for 63 percent of the U.S. market’s mobile network data traffic during the same period.

Meanwhile, AT&T, despite facing criticism for network service congestion in recent years, maintains that it carried more wireless data traffic than any other operator. The company claimed a 50 percent share of the nation’s mobile data traffic in the previous year, with a remarkable 5,000 percent surge in data traffic over the last three years. AT&T also noted having twice as many smartphone customers as its closest competitor, Verizon. The growth in data traffic, particularly from iPhone users, who reportedly consume ten times more data than average cell phone users, significantly contributed to AT&T’s network load.

Mark Siegel, a spokesperson for AT&T, responded to ABI Research’s findings by affirming that AT&T leads in mobile data traffic based on their analysis of third-party data. On the other hand, ABI analyst Dan Shey explained that their report incorporated third-party and carrier-provided data to compare 2G, 3G, and 4G traffic across various devices. Shey acknowledged AT&T’s dominance in smartphones and activated 3G devices but pointed out that Verizon and Sprint outperformed due to a higher number of wireless laptop users, who inherently consume more wireless resources.

Additionally, Shey mentioned that Verizon and Sprint’s broader 3G network coverage reduced network switching issues experienced by AT&T customers moving between different coverage areas. Looking ahead, Shey emphasized the importance of all carriers preparing for a significant surge in data traffic by 2014, necessitating network capacity upgrades and strategic pricing strategies to manage the growth effectively.

FAQs

  1. How did the ABI Research report challenge AT&T’s claim on wireless data traffic?
    The ABI Research report revealed that both Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel exceeded AT&T in handling mobile data traffic in the previous year.

  2. What percentage of the U.S. market’s mobile data traffic did Verizon and Sprint collectively account for?
    Verizon and Sprint collectively accounted for 63 percent of the U.S. market’s mobile network data traffic.

  3. What factors did AT&T highlight to support its position on leading wireless data traffic?
    AT&T emphasized its 50 percent share of the nation’s mobile data traffic, significant growth in data traffic over the years, and having double the number of smartphone customers compared to Verizon.

  4. What role did iPhone users play in contributing to AT&T’s data traffic growth?
    iPhone users were noted to consume ten times more data than average cell phone users, significantly contributing to AT&T’s data traffic load.

  5. How did Mark Siegel respond to ABI Research’s conclusions regarding AT&T’s data traffic?
    Mark Siegel defended AT&T’s position by citing internal research and analysis supporting their claim of leading in mobile data traffic.

  6. What data sources did ABI analyst Dan Shey utilize in compiling the report?
    Dan Shey incorporated third-party data and primary data from carriers to compile the report’s findings.

  7. Why did Verizon and Sprint outperform AT&T in data traffic despite having fewer smartphone users?
    Verizon and Sprint had a higher number of wireless laptop users, who consume more wireless resources, contributing to their lead in data traffic.

  8. How did broader 3G network coverage benefit Verizon and Sprint over AT&T?
    Verizon and Sprint’s wider 3G network coverage reduced network switching issues for customers moving between coverage areas, enhancing user experience.

  9. What key takeaway did Shey emphasize regarding future data traffic trends?
    Shey highlighted the imminent surge in data traffic by 2014, stressing the need for carriers to prepare network capacity and pricing strategies accordingly.

  10. What measures did Shey suggest for carriers to manage the anticipated growth in data traffic?
    Shey advised carriers to upgrade network capacities and implement strategic pricing and incentives to ensure smooth and consistent data usage.

Summary

The article delves into the challenge to AT&T’s claim of leading wireless data traffic by Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel, as per an ABI Research report. While AT&T asserted its dominance in mobile data traffic, the report indicated otherwise, attributing Verizon and Sprint’s lead to a higher number of wireless laptop users. The discussion also highlighted the impact of iPhone users on AT&T’s data traffic growth and the importance of network capacity upgrades to manage the anticipated surge in data traffic by 2014. As the industry gears up for increased data consumption, strategic planning and network enhancements will play a vital role in ensuring seamless user experience and efficient data management. For more insights and updates on the evolving landscape of wireless data traffic, visit our website.