As mobile devices get increasingly sophisticated and users’ taste for access to information and entertainment grows, so does the amount of data consumed, having tripled in 2011 alone! Although users are increasingly aware of the costs associated with data and roaming, many are unfamiliar with how much data is used by specific mobile services, applications or games and how high the costs are, having thrown away nearly $8 Billion last year from being ‘unaware’ of data use and being on the wrong data plan.
Many users don’t know that some of their favorite apps are gobbling up their data plans even when they aren’t using them. In a recent survey by Carphone Warehouse, nearly 81% of respondents didn’t know that apps like Twitter and Skype consume data even when not in use. These apps run updates and network requests in the background, causing signaling and congestion for operators and high costs to users often resulting in ‘’bill shock’’, a sudden and unexpected increase in monthly cell bills affecting more than 30 million Americans in 2010. Although pressures from the FCC have forced operators to disclose high data and roaming charges big data bills are still being delivered, some reaching more than $10,000!
Users aren’t the only ones suffering from the onslaught of mobile data. Operators struggle to maintain network connectivity and superior user experience all while maintaining their rapidly shrinking margins. Median smartphone data usage at AT&T Wireless was up 888%, and 551% at Verizon last year. They’re looking for new ways to manage the data and signaling from chatty apps that run in the background, consume valuable network resources and understand that in the long run scaling their infrastructure to handle the data tsunami goes beyond capping users’ data plans and buying more spectrum.
A comprehensive solution that addresses the entire ecosystem: from end users and applications to mobile devices and the network is required. This is where SEVEN has a viable solution. Open Channel is mobile traffic optimization solution that addresses the signaling traffic clogging operator networks from chatty mobile apps. It’s transparent to end-users, applications, the network and devices so it doesn’t interfere with the user experience and can work across 3G, 4G, LTE and GSM Networks.
Open Channel has been shown to reduce the amount of smartphone-generated signaling by as much as 40%, and bandwidth by up to 70%. Want to learn more about it, check out our whitepaper on signaling and the mobile data challenges facing operators and end users. Let us know what you think!