Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Sunday, May 16, 2021

And I thought I was the only who never used up any wireless voice minutes. In fact, more and more people are talking less and less on their cellphones:

Instead of talking on their cellphones, people are making use of all the extras that iPhones, BlackBerrys and other smartphones were also designed to do — browse the Web, listen to music, watch television, play games and send e-mail and text messages.

The number of text messages sent per user increased by nearly 50 percent nationwide last year, according to the CTIA, the wireless industry association. And for the first time in the United States, the amount of data in text, e-mail messages, streaming video, music and other services on mobile devices in 2009 surpassed the amount of voice data in cellphone calls, industry executives and analysts say.

“Originally, talking was the only cellphone application,” said Dan Hesse, chief executive of Sprint Nextel. “But now it’s less than half of the traffic on mobile networks.”

And, markets being markets, this trending means that our wireless bills soon will flip-flop — instead of the bucket of voice minutes determining the base monthly charges, the amount of data we use will be the determining factor. I’m wondering just how that will be structured: It’s easy to get across talk-time, but megabytes of data are more nebulous. How many minutes of Web surfing or music-streaming will wind up being billable?

I’m pretty surprised by this decline of voice. Like I said, I thought I was a particularly light talker. Most people I know seem to chit-chat on their wireless phones with abandon, and they tend to carry plans with loads of minutes. Meanwhile, I’ve never gone with anything more than the monthly minimum-minutes plan, and never consciously had to limit myself with it. The only data component that seems widely adopted is texting — again, something that I’ve never taken to.

This is certainly a shift in average-person usage. This, along with more migration to prepaid voice/data plans, means the telecom market could look vastly different five years from now.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 05/16/2010 02:47pm
Category: Internet, Society, Tech, iPhone
| Permalink | Trackback |

2 Feedbacks »

    Looks like I picked just the right time to switch to an iPhone. Starting this month, AT&T Wireless is scrapping the formerly-standard flat-fee data plan for unlimited monthly consumption: Newcomers will have two options: Under the DataPlus plan, s…

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 06/02/2021 @ 11:30 PM


    The explosion of digital and online communication options has resulted in nobody under 40 ever returning your phone calls. Young people say they avoid voice calls because the immediacy of a phone call strips them of the control that they have over the …

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 08/08/2021 @ 4:44 PM

RSS feed for feedback on this post.

Say something! (with optional tweeting)

Comment moderation might kick in, so please do not hit the "Say It!" button more than once.

Send To Twitter

(Don't worry, your Twitter Name/Password is NOT saved.)