Snapchat hogs 75 percent of all social messaging data traffic in the U.K.

Snapchat Emoji Camera Updates
Maurizio Pesce/Flickr
Snapchat’s vanishing act is beginning to leave a trail of data. Snapchat’s Discovery feature could be the reason Vodafone’s CEO recently announced the messaging app accounts for 75 percent of all mobile instant messaging data in the United Kingdom.

In a recent earnings calls, Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao attested that “if you take all the messaging apps, so Facebook, WhatsApp, whatever, Google, whatever, 75 percent of the traffic today is Snapchat.”

In late January, Snapchat debuted its Discover tab, a collection of media partners delivering curated video content. In March, barely over a month after its release, the average weekly data consumption of Snapchat users in the U.K. quadrupled from roughly 100 MB/s to 400 MB/s. In the U.K., 14 percent of all mobile Internet users are active Snapchat users, tied with the United States and Ireland.

Snapchat does not give you the option to perform certain actions only through either Wi-Fi or cellular data, lumping all uploading and streaming into whatever data connection mobile users have. In February, users complained that the app consumes copious amounts of data when it’s not in use. But, a recent search of Snapchat’s data usage on a Samsung Galaxy phone reveals relatively normal consumption rates of background data.

Snapchat’s video dominance in the U.K. falls in line with trends other carriers are seeing. Speaking at the National Association of Broadcasters conference back in 2013, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam stated that video accounted for 50 percent of the carrier’s mobile data. By 2017, McAdams predicted video will be 66 percent of all mobile data traffic for Verizon.

Before you start saving your money for when/if Snapchat goes public, Snapchat does face some other strange threats in the United Kingdom. In January, Prime Minister David Cameron announced he plans to introduce a “snoopers’ charter” that will give the government better surveillance of Internet communications if he is re-elected. As part of this new charter, Cameron would ban apps that encrypt user data such as Snapchat. Cameron was re-elected on May 8.

Snapchat has no intentions of slowing down its data feeding. The company recently introduced advertisers to Two Pennies, an ad program in which advertisers are charged two cents per view on 10-second videos placed in Discover. With Spotify debuting a new video platform that resembles Snapchat’s Discover tab, you may need to rethink the data cap on your next cell phone bill.

Mobile

Midrange phones can’t do A.I., but MediaTek’s P90 chip aims to change that

MediaTek has announced the Helio P90 mobile processor, which it says will bring the best A.I. features we see on high-end smartphones, to the mid-range. We spoke to the company about the chip.
Mobile

5G’s arrival is transforming tech. Here’s everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.
Mobile

Looking for flexible and inexpensive phone service? Check out our favorite MVNOs

Looking to switch from a major carrier to something a little more affordable? Luckily, there are a ton of great MVNO options to choose from. Check out our guide to the best MVNOs, from Boost Mobile to Google Fi.
Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Mobile

G’day, Google: U.S. users can now give Assistant a British or Australian accent

U.S. Google Assistant users can give their Assistant a different voice. Google has updated Assistant with the ability for users to give it either a British or Australian accent, which could make it a little more personal for some.
Music

Tune in to the best internet radio stations for your listening pleasure

Even in the streaming era, radio stations get some of the best exclusives and curate some of the finest handpicked playlists around. Here are the best internet radio stations, for your listening pleasure.
Mobile

Leave the laptop at home, the iPad Pro is the travel buddy to take on vacay

The iPad Pro is a powerful tablet that's perfect for creatives and professionals. How does it fare when traveling with it as a laptop replacement? We took it on a two week trek in Japan to find out.
Computing

Microsoft’s latest patent paves the way for Andromeda dual-screen mobile device

The latest patent discovery from Microsoft showcases a new hinge design for quickly opening a dual-screen mobile device with a single hand. Could this be additional proof surrounding the rumors of the company's Project Andromeda device?
Mobile

Need to record calls on an iPhone? Check out our handy guide

Are you wondering how to record calls on your iPhone? It isn't as easy as you might think, but we'll walk you through the process of doing so with Google Voice, and identify several other apps and external voice recorders that can help.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best true wireless earbuds around.
Mobile

Apple is spending $1 billion to hire up to 15,000 new employees in Austin

Apple has announced a series of expansions across the U.S. -- including a massive expansion to the company's Austin campus that will see it spending $1 billion to accommodate for up to 15,000 new employees.
Outdoors

Google Maps makes it easier than ever to find a Lime bike or scooter

Google Maps has added a new feature that helps you find a Lime bike or scooter in just a few taps. The feature currently works in 11 U.S. cities served by Lime, with more coming next year.
Mobile

Quirky smartphone accessories you never knew you needed

Looking for a few accoutrements to make your smartphone even better? If you, or someone you know, is a sucker for accessories, you'll want to check out our collection of quirky smartphone accessories you never knew you needed.
Mobile

Ditch your smartphone for a year and win $100k from Vitaminwater

Vitaminwater is willing to part with $100,000 if you're willing to part with your smartphone partner for a year. Could you last for a year armed with only a 1996-era phone? Here's your chance to find out.