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Facebook and YouTube dominate mobile traffic

Ever wondered how much mobile traffic those two behemoths of the mobile (and indeed desktop) world, Facebook and YouTube actually use?

Well, as far as North American traffic goes – as measured by a Sandvine report compiled by BI Intelligence for Business Insider – in September, Facebook accounted for 19 per cent of mobile traffic, and YouTube snagged almost as much at 18 per cent.

So combined, the two have 37 per cent of traffic, well over a third of total mobile traffic, at least in the American market.

General traffic through a mobile web browser was in third place, considerably behind on 11 per cent, followed by streamed video on 6 per cent, and encrypted traffic on 5 per cent. The next biggest service was Instagram, tied with Netflix and Google Cloud on 4 per cent, ahead of iTunes and Pandora on 3 per cent.

A recent Sandvine report from November entitled “Global Internet Phenomena Report 2H 2014” noted that Facebook video autoplay sparked a major increase in mobile usage, and indeed prompted a jump in average subscriber usage by up to 60 per cent on mobile.

That report also pegged Netflix as the leading video streaming service in North America by far, with 35 per cent of downstream traffic in the peak evening hours compared to Amazon Instant Video’s 2.6 per cent.

Darren Allan

Darran has over 25 years of experience in digital and magazine publishing as a writer and editor. He's also an author, having co-written a novel published by Little, Brown (Hachette UK). He currently writes news, features and buying guides for TechRadar, and occasionally other Future websites such as T3 or Creative Bloq and he's a copy editor for TechRadar Pro. Darrran has written for a large number of tech and gaming websites/magazines in the past, including Web User and ComputerActive. He has also worked at IDG Media, having been the Editor of PC Games Solutions and the Deputy Editor of PC Home.