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OpenSignal: Size matters

Posted: , by Alan F.

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OpenSignal: Size matters
According to OpenSignal, which took the information from its Android app, size matters. And when we talk about size, we are talking about how big the display is on an Android phone. The larger the screen, the larger the amount of data that is consumed each month. For every square inch of display, an extra 75MB of data is used over a cellular network. At the same time, 288MB of additional data comes through a Wi-Fi pipeline for each square inch of display.

With 9,962 Android devices used for the survey, OpenSignal found a positive correlation between display size and data usage over Wi-Fi. This correlation also shows up between display size and data usage over cellular although the connection is not nearly as strong. What is interesting is that when on the go, most people use Android devices with large screens the same way they use Android devices with smaller displays. That changes when at home or at places with free Wi-Fi. That makes sense since at home, and at most places offering free Wi-Fi, there are alternative screens for viewing entertainment. On the other hand,while on the run, you have no choice but to use the screen on your phone no matter how small it is.

The study concludes that with smartphone screens increasing in size every year, data use is going to follow. And in general, when using Wi-Fi, screen-size plays a big role in determining the amount of data consumed. And while using cellular data, the amount of data used depends on factors other than screen size.

source: OpenSignal via FierceWireless

The data shows that with a Wi-Fi connection,  the larger the screen size, the larger the amount of data consumed
The data shows that with a Wi-Fi connection,  the larger the screen size, the larger the amount of data consumed

The data shows that with a Wi-Fi connection,  the larger the screen size, the larger the amount of data consumed


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posted on 26 Mar 2013, 17:26 10

1. ckoch125 (Posts: 191; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)


Well it kind of makes sense. The larger screen makes it easier and more enjoyable to browse the web, etc.

posted on 26 Mar 2013, 17:42 9

2. ZeroCide (Posts: 696; Member since: 09 Jan 2013)


Yea no-brainer. Better game, netflix, hulu, web experience will suck up more data usage.

posted on 26 Mar 2013, 17:51 4

3. N.Reynolds (Posts: 257; Member since: 15 Feb 2011)


Haha, I thought the exact same thing.

posted on 26 Mar 2013, 18:25 2

4. ghostkilla1388 (Posts: 50; Member since: 11 Jun 2012)


When i had my Droid X2 i used about 1.5 gb avg a month, now i have a Galaxy Note 2 and use more than 3 a month. So yeah its true lol.

posted on 26 Mar 2013, 23:50 2

7. MAXXtreme007 (Posts: 22; Member since: 28 Jun 2012)


Probably most likely the LTE. You had a Droid X2 so you're on Verizon, and there is a ton of difference between 3G and LTE. I switched from 3G to LTE and noticed a substantial difference as well—it's easier to use up more data because of how much less time you sit waiting for the page to load.

posted on 27 Mar 2013, 10:38

9. McLTE (Posts: 711; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


Probalby most likely he really enjoyes the screen and he's just using it MORE.

Going from a 4.3" phone to a 5.5" makes it much more usuable for just about everything.. regardless of the data speeds. Yes LTE makes a difference, but not nearly as much as having the big screen.

posted on 26 Mar 2013, 20:17 3

5. jroc74 (Posts: 5065; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


"The larger the screen, the larger the amount of data that is consumed each month."

Some of us already knew this. Bigger screens means more of the browser is on screen. Thats more data on the screen vs a smaller screen. I can probably see more ads on a bigger screen vs a smaller one.

And watching Netflix on a bigger screen phone is just better. I rarely used it on my Droid 1 when I had to switch back to it.

posted on 26 Mar 2013, 20:48

6. estreito (Posts: 15; Member since: 11 May 2012)


I think "big" screen users are also "geekier" to start with, so the study may be a little compromised, although i believe it has a degree of truth.

posted on 27 Mar 2013, 07:51

8. Leo_MC (Posts: 560; Member since: 02 Dec 2011)


10" 1024x768 consumes more data than 5" 1080p?
I don't think so.

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