Record data growth on mobile network: Lots of New Year's greetings on the KPN network

As usual, it was extremely busy last night on the network of the Netherlands. Vast numbers of people were once again wishing one another a Happy New Year via the KPN mobile network. With yet another data record on the mobile network. It was also busier than normal on the fixed network, because more people than usual celebrated New Year’s Eve at home.

This led to a record consumption of more than 248 terabytes on the mobile network between 10 pm and 4 am. This is the biggest increase for ten years and substantially more than last year, when a mere 196 terabytes were consumed. This demonstrates yet again how KPN’s network connects everyone. The rise in traffic is due to the ever-increasing demand to be connected with one another and is probably the result of fewer fireworks. The peak time on the mobile network was shortly after the turn of the year – between midnight and 12.05 am, when people were contacting one another by phone, SMS and app.

There was also more data traffic on the fixed network, peaking at 4 pm. That was the moment when a lot of people were surfing the internet and watching videos on popular streaming services. There was a doubling of data traffic on the fixed network after midnight, because of the vast numbers of calls made and video clips and photos sent.

It is not so long ago that people would wish each other a Happy New Year mainly by phone; then SMS greetings increased in popularity too. More recently, mobile data has increasingly been used to send WhatsApp messages, to upload video clips and for social media and mobile internet.

This year the number of text messages sent declined once again. At New Year 2021 between 10 pm and 4 am around 1.8 million text messages (2.4 million in 2020) were sent, a further decrease in comparison with previous years. The number of phone calls was slightly down as well. This year 3.8 million calls were made, as against 4.1 million in 2020.

Both the mobile and the fixed network were able to withstand the joyful terabyte bombardment. Because of COVID-19 and working from home, it was busier than ever on KPN’s networks in 2020. This trend is likely to continue thanks to homeworking and a further growth in data traffic.