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Validas Mixes Data Usage, Politics

Thu, 04/14/2011 - 1:34pm
Monica Alleven

Could wireless technology be a unifying factor in a divided nation? And while we're on the topic of politics, can Validas, a vendor that provides a platform for analyzing wireless bills, predict which party will win the next U.S. presidency?

Executives at the firm had a little fun with those ideas in a blog post evaluating states with the highest average data downloads per user. They threw results onto a map of the country showing Red (Republican) and Blue (Democrat) states based on the 2008 presidential election.

Their map shows Americans in states that voted Republican average about 447 MB per month in downloads, while states that voted Democratic averaged 449 MB per person per month, so, both sides are pretty close. Iowa, incidentally, had the highest average mobile data usage followed by Wisconsin and Arizona.

Validas CEO Tom Pepe says the chart was inspired by the ones you see on national cable programs like MSNBC and Fox. They thought about adding electoral votes into the mix and other factors, but that might come in future updates.

Of the Top 10 states with the greatest average data usage per person, six voted Democrat (including Washington, D.C.) and four voted Republican in 2008, raising the question: Can we predict our next president based on which party appears more often in that Top 10 list? For future elections, "stay tuned" is Validas' message.

As for the methodology, Validas says Americans from all 50 states use its services to evaluate and reduce their cellular bills, but for this study, they focused on the states with heavy usage of its service to get an accurate account on average data consumed per person. So the study included 38 states with enough data to qualify, while seven Republican and six Democrat states did not qualify and were excluded.

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