Google Android Phones Are Network Hogs: Study

The growing popularity of
Android-operated phones — made by companies including Asian vendors HTC
Corp and Samsung Electronics — comes as handsets look set to overtake
computers as the most used device for browsing the Web.

Wireless
operators are keen on raising revenue from Internet browsing and the
social networking boom as revenue from traditional voice calls decline,
but they are facing increasingly congested networks.

Fearful
of losing customers, only a few operators have publicly admitted to the
problem of keeping pace with data traffic, but the majority is
experiencing difficulties.

The
study by telecom network technology firm Arieso showed that customers
with Android phones are creating more data traffic mostly due to better
cameras and video recorders, and software for editing the footage.

"When more could be done, more tends to be done," said Arieso’s Chief Technology Officer Michael Flanagan.

"Smartphone subscriptions are rising and so too is subscriber appetite for mobile data. It’s a trend that’s set to continue."

Android software, offered free to cellphone vendors, has grown strongly since coming to market two years ago.

Globally
Android usage ranked second in the last quarter, beating Apple’s iPhone
and Research In Motion, but still trailing Nokia’s Symbian. Analysts
expect it to become the leading operating system next year.

Mobile
data usage has rocketed since the introduction of Apple Inc’s iPhone in
2007, with usage of data networks seen roughly doubling each year.

"What
operators are really suffering from is the fact that popularity of
smartphones came too quickly," said Lance Hiley, VP of market strategy
at telecoms network technology provider Cambridge Broadband Networks.

Telecoms
gear makers Ericsson, Nokia Siemens and Alcatel-Lucent, which have
struggled in recent years in the face of aggressive pricing by Asian
rivals, expect rising data traffic to lead to new orders.

(Editing by Louise Heavens)

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