New report from ComReg shows mobile data usage is way up
Broadband speeds have increased across the country too.
ComReg’s quarterly data report came out yesterday, and the findings around our mobile usage are really interesting.
As it turns out, we’re talking and texting less, but using way more data than we were this time last year.
Are you an average mobile user?
Between July and September 2017, the average Irish consumer spoke on their mobiles for 212 minutes per month, which is a very slight decrease, down 0.8% year-on-year. Texts dropped more, with the average consumer sending 83 texts per month, down almost 13% on last year.
However, data usage is up 65% since the same time last year, with the average consumer using 4.5GB of data every month.
Usage of 4G is also up on last year, with almost half of all mobile subscriptions (46%) actively using 4G networks.
Use a lot of data?
If you’re one of the people who is using a lot more data this year than you previously did, it’s possible you may not be on the best plan for your usage anymore.
If you’re happy with your actual phone, you could make huge savings by switching to a SIM-only deal for heavy data users. These plans range from €20 to €30 per month, and have either unlimited data, or a high data allowance of 30GB.
Broadband subscriptions and speeds
Aside from the mobile phone data, ComReg’s report also has information on the state of broadband in Ireland.
Fixed broadband subscriptions were up by 3.6% compared to the same period in 2016, which means we have a broadband penetration rate for fixed and mobile broadband of 86% - the EU average is 83%.
And, according to ComReg, average fixed broadband speeds are increasing too.
The report says that around 70% of all fixed broadband subscriptions had speeds of equal to or greater than 30Mbps, up from 62.5% in the same period in 2016.
Do you suffer with slow broadband speeds?
30Mbps is the minimum speed that the National Broadband Plan is targeting for every household in the country.
If you’re suffering with slow speeds, there are a few things you can do:
- Firstly, carry out a speed test to check the actual speed you’re getting.
- To improve your speeds if you’re using WiFi, make sure the router is not encased in a cabinet or surrounded by things that may block the signal and ensure the modem is not near devices that could interfere with it - like microwaves, baby monitors or cordless phones.
- If you need really reliable, fast speeds on a particular device, try plugging it directly into the router, or move the router into the room where you’re using the device.
- If you live in an apartment building or an area with lots of wireless modems and lots of devices you may experience some wireless interference. Simply rebooting your modem - by unplugging it, leaving it for 30 seconds and plugging it back in - will automatically select the most appropriate channel for you.
- Certain devices can cause problems with your WiFi. Try disconnecting all of your devices one by one to see if there’s a particular one that’s causing you a problem.
If none of these solutions work, contact your provider to see if they can offer a solution - it’s possible that they may be able to upgrade your equipment and this could make a massive difference.
If your provider can’t help, look around to see if you can find a deal that offers better speeds. Switcher.ie’s free broadband deal checker shows you all of the deals available in your area, along with information on the type of connection, and maximum speeds for each provider.
Remember, broadband providers advertise ‘up to’ speeds, which are not a guarantee of the speed you will get, so changing to a faster type of connection - if it’s available - might be the best bet.