Mobile device usage peaks during NFL championship

By Joe Hewitson

Use your smartphone during the big game last weekend? Well, you’re not alone. Adweek recently discussed the findings of a Fetch study that said mobile device usage was quite a bit higher during the event. As unsurprising as that may be, the real insight lies in when and how people used their devices.

Adweek summed up the report by picking six data points throughout the game. What they found was an ebb and flow of mobile traffic that coincided with the progression of the game itself.

Leading up to kickoff, mobile device usage spiked 10 percent when compared to typical Sundays. It’s not hard to imagine a lot of people using their devices to check in with friends, talk smack to rival fans and maybe order a pizza or two.

As the game approached, it seemed as though people were glued to the big screen instead of to their smartphones. Be it the anticipation of the kickoff or simply a sign of people settling in for the show, usage dipped 10 percent — back to normal levels — during the 15-minute lead-up to the game.

People didn’t stay away long, though. During the first few plays, usage shot back up nearly 30 percent. As the Falcons proceeded to rack up an impressive tally of 21-3 by the end of the second quarter, usage remained at this inflated level. Then, when Lady Gaga entered the picture from the peak of NRG Stadium, the inevitable Twitter storm ensued.

The second half

Mobile device usage rose some 32 percent at the beginning of the third quarter thanks to her performance. Throughout the rest of the game, while Tom Brady and the Patriots mounted their record-breaking comeback, users kept stoking the social media fire with usage that rose between 10 percent and 20 percent the rest of regulation.

In somewhat indicting fashion, mobile device use slipped 15 percent as the Patriots cemented their impossible comeback and the mobile world decided it was a good time to disconnect for a while.

However, consumer use of mobile devices wasn’t just to vent about the game. eMarketer published some results from Think with Google that give a little more detail into this heightened mobile traffic. An impressive 82 percent of searches done on ads that premiered during the game were carried out on mobile devices. Additionally, people fired up an average of 3.21 social apps, 2.4 music apps and 2.22 entertainment apps during the epic comeback.

So, what does this show? Users are turning to their mobile devices with increasing frequency, even while consuming other media. Having a mobile strategy ready to interact with this audience has never been more important.

Written By

Joe Hewitson

IT Developer, Total Benchmark Solution

With a degree in Applied Computing Technology and over a decade of service in the IT and Software Development industries, Joe Hewitson has acquired a keen ability to write about emerging technologies and the impact they have on a wide range of industries. Accompanying his love for…

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