Non-4G Smartphones Still Generate 70% of North American Smartphone Web Traffic

Non-4G Smartphones Still Generate 70% of North American Smartphone Web Traffic

  • 27 June 2013

While more than 50% of mobile phone users in the U.S are smartphone users according to comScore, most phones sporting a 4G antenna are pricier than their 3G counterparts. Examining smartphone Web usage across North America, Chitika Insights found that 4G phones contribute to about 30% of the total traffic from all North American smartphones. Within the 4G group, users of newer phones, specifically released after July 2012, generated 53% of continental 4G smartphone traffic.

To quantify 4G phone Web usage, Chitika Insights analyzed tens of millions of smartphone-based online ad impressions recorded on the Chitika network from June 1 to June 13, 2013.

Chitika Insights 4G vs. Non-4G Smartphone Web Traffic

Interestingly, iPhone 5 users in particular generated about 40% of the total traffic from 4G phones and 76% of the traffic from 4G phones released after July 2012.

The above results point to users of newer 4G phones driving more traffic than owners of older models, despite the latter’s advantage in terms of time on the market. Although Apple and Samsung are currently the largest players in the 4G phone marketplace, the statistics point to a large growth potential for this technology in North America. 70% of smartphone traffic is still generated by non-4G users, and with carriers continuing to expand their 4G capabilities along with price incentives on certain phone models, it’s likely that many users will convert to a 4G device sometime in the near future. 

List of Post-July 2012 4G Phones Included:





iPhone 5


Atrix HD

Razr M

Razr HD

Razr Maxx HD

Photon Q



HTC First

Windows Phone 8X

Windows Phone 8S

HTC Butterfly/HTC J

HTC Desire X

HTC Desire V

Droid Incredible 4G LTE


Samsung Galaxy S4

Samsung Galaxy Note 2


Sony Xperia GX SO-04D

Sony Xperia SX SO-05D

Sony Xperia T LTE

Sony Xperia V

Sony Xperia ZL


LG Nexus 4 E960

LG Optimus G

LG Optimus Vu II F200


Nokia Lumia 820

Nokia Lumia 822

Nokia Lumia 920

Nokia Lumia 928