iPad Users Increasingly Relying on Cellular Data

iPads with Cellular ConnectionsApp makers may want to take another look at the iPad because connectivity trends are changing. Historically, iPad users have favored WiFi connections over cellular data, according to GigaOm. But in the past six months there’s been a big jump in the number of iPads connected to 3G.

Analytics software company Actix, which gathers information from eight carriers around the world, noticed the uptick starting in early 2013. From GigaOm:

Data use coming from iPads has grown four times in just the last six months, according to data gleaned from mobile network operators by U.K.-based analytics software company Actix. And for the first time, there are two different iPad models among the top 10 most data-hungry devices, which has always only had smartphones on it.

It’s not the latest 4G-capable iPad that’s eating up all this data, though, it’s older 3G models: the iPad 2 and iPad 3 are now No. 6 and No. 7, respectively, on this list, says Actix; the rest are smartphones.

Read the full article at GigaOm >>>

What does this mean for developers and testers? People are changing the way they consumer apps on the iPad. Where they traditionally had to stay still in a location with WiFi it’s very possible that your tablet app will now need to function on-the-go. Alternatively, if your app is meant to be used while out and about you might not have optimized a tablet-specific version. This changing trend might inspire you to re-think that approach.

If you’re a tester this means you need to add another important use case to your testing plans. If you were being thorough, odds are you were already testing how the app worked in-the-wild on a cellular connection. That’s not a small use case anymore, it’s now a vital part of making sure an app works under real world conditions.

If you already have an iPad app but are nervous this trend will negatively effect your app’s performance, check out your Applause score. The Interoperability and Stability attributes consider wireless and connectivity (respectively). If your app’s Applause Score has taken a nose dive in the past few months, this could be your issue.

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