SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Gary Arora, Zakia Bouachraoui, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan

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Canadians Using Less Than Half the Mobile Data and Paying up to Five Times More for It Than Americans

New research of mobile usage in Canada has found that a typical Canadian uses 56% less mobile data per month than the average American. The research, by Tutela, the crowdsourced mobile data company based in Victoria, Canada, was collected from over 48 million mobile data users across ten countries during the month of May, including over 100,000 users in Canada.

The research looks at the breakdown of cellular usage vs. Wi-Fi in countries including Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. Canada ranks tenth on the list, behind Australia, Italy and Brazil, with an average cellular data usage of 2.7GB per month, much behind the USA’s hefty 6.1GB. When it comes to mobile Wi-Fi data usage, a typical Canadian uses the same amount per month as a typical American - 8.4GB per month.

The results are also broken down by the four main network providers in Canada: Bell, Telus, Rogers and Freedom Mobile. The results shows that users on the Rogers network use the most cellular data, using 26.5% of their data on mobile networks and 73.5% on Wi-Fi. According to the study, Bell mobile users are the most cautious about using mobile data with just 18.5% of their data usage on 3G and 4G networks and relying on Wi-Fi for 81.5% of their data usage.

Tutela tests mobile networks in a way that represents the day-to-day usage and experience of real-world mobile users. The methodology and configuration simulate typical user mobile behaviour, such as accessing websites or downloading and sending images. Tutela’s methodology for this report analyzed a subset of their total available data to determine the average data usage across both cellular and Wi-Fi.

Tom Luke, Vice President, Tutela, said: “These results clearly show that Canadian mobile users are using considerably less data than users in other countries and are therefore turning to Wi-Fi more often. There could be a number of reasons for this, but the most likely reason is the cost of mobile data being notoriously expensive compared to other countries. A recent report actually found Canada to be the fifth most expensive country in the world for mobile data. It is possible that price could be a key factor in Canada’s low cellular data consumption, particularly when you consider that they use the same amount of data on Wi-Fi as their American counterparts.”

Luke continued: “It is also interesting to look at the breakdown by operator. These results show that on average, Bell users are using the least amount of cellular data, and that Rogers users are consuming the most. In our recent report looking at Canadian mobile network quality, our results showed Bell achieving the fastest network speeds, with Rogers the slowest, which could suggest network congestion is impacting on Rogers network performance.”

About Tutela:

Tutela Technologies, Ltd. is a Canadian crowdsourced mobile data company with offices in Victoria, British Columbia and London, England.

For more information, visit tutela.com.

Average Monthly Mobile Data Usage – link to chart
Source: Data from Tutela users, all networks. Collected from approximately 48 million users during May 2018 from Android and iOS.

Average Monthly Cellular vs Wi-Fi Usage across Canadian operators – link to chart
Source: 100,000 Tutela users in Canada. Data collected from Android and iOS mobile devices.

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