Press Release

The latest figures on Spain’s mobile telephone usage have revealed a sharp increase in mobile data usage during the summer vacation period, leading to a plunge in download speeds, particularly for those on the Vodafone network.

The analysis from Tutela, the crowdsourced mobile data company, showed that data usage increased rapidly as the holiday season started in Spain, with Vodafone network subscribers increasing their average daily data usage by 32 per cent.

This increase in data usage and network traffic has had a direct, negative impact on average download speeds, leading to a significant ‘Summer Slowdown’ for residents. Vodafone, for example, saw average download speeds fall from 19Mbps at the beginning of June, to just over 10Mbps into mid August.

The data also shows a similar, albeit smaller increase, for the other three leading operators in Spain. This is most likely the result of people going away for their summer holiday to other parts of the country, as the biggest drop in download performance was in the key holiday hotspots of Spain.

“Spain is undoubtedly one of the most popular summer hotspots, and not just for visitors but residents too.” Explains Tom Luke, Vice President, Tutela. “As locals head to the coast for a hard earned vacation over summer, they’re using more mobile data than they would at home, impacting significantly on download speeds. This ‘Summer Slowdown’ is caused by network congestion due to an increase in data usage.”

Tutela’s findings show significant drops in 4G download speeds, specifically in Andalusia, Catalonia, Murcia and Valenciana at the end of July. In contrast, 4G download speeds for Madrid have stayed relatively stable, even growing slightly at the end of July before a small drop into mid August.

To compile the data, Tutela took more than 1.5 million mobile speed tests from Spanish residents only, between June 4th and 19th August 2018, calculating the average speeds users were getting through each network. Tutela tests mobile networks in a way that represents the day-to-day usage and experience of real-world mobile users, such as accessing websites or downloading and sending images (not the maximum potential speeds under test conditions), so it can see what a typical user is experiencing on any given network.

Tutela does not collect any personal information or unique device data. This protects the device owner’s privacy, and ensures compliance with data protection and privacy laws such as the EU Data Protection Directive and COPPA.