IT Brief New Zealand - Technology news for CIOs & IT decision-makers
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Huge jump in data use over new year period - Vodafone NZ
Tue, 4th Jan 2022
FYI, this story is more than a year old

The 2021/22 New Year period looked a little different this year, with many festivals and events delayed due to shifting alert levels, so it appears that Vodafone customers instead turned to their phones to celebrate.

According to the telecommunications firm, there was a 55% increase in data used across Vodafone NZs mobile networks between 8pm on December 31st and 11pm on January 1st when compared to the same period last year.

Sharina Nisha, Head of Network Services, said Vodafone NZ's teams were prepared for another massive traffic spike, especially with a spike of 51% more data used over the Christmas period.

"We are laser focused on helping connect our customers to their loved ones, so we expect these types of internet data surges over holiday periods. With the borders still closed, its no surprise people wanted to share the celebrations with those closest to them virtually, by tapping into digital channels," she says.

Vodafone customers consumed 975 terabytes (TB) of mobile data over the New Years Eve period, compared to 630 TB during the same period on New Years 2020/21. For context that would equate to streaming 650,106 hours of high-definition video (based on 1080p at 1.5GB per hour).

"It is fair to say that 2021 has been a busy year for our technology teams, responding to ongoing data increases and upgrading digital infrastructure across Aotearoa, especially in rapidly growing regional towns and cities," says Nisha.

"Whether you are at a campground, bach or just chilling at home, we want our customers to be able to connect to loved ones," she says.

In addition to upgrading or building approximately 200 cell sites in 2021, over summer Vodafone is deploying temporary cell sites on wheels (COWs) at particularly busy events around Aotearoa so festival goers can keep in touch with one another.

NYE data traffic volumes were measured between 8pm on December 31st and 11pm on January 1st.

Vodafone customers used 1,777 Terabytes (TB) of data across Christmas Day and Boxing Day, compared to 1,178 TB of data across New Zealand during the same two days last year, cracking a 51% increase year-on-year.

That is equivalent to New Zealanders streaming more than 1,184,667 hours of video in just two days.

The most popular time to go online - such as to stream content, video-call, or check out the latest online deals, was between 8-9pm on both Christmas and Boxing Day, with the peaks seeing 58 TB and 61 TB of data used respectively.