Internet + Mobile Use Actually Dropped During Super Bowl, Despite Twitter Spikes

Thousands of people travelled to New Orleans to watch Super Bowl XLVII, and while many were pleased with Beyoncé’s halftime performance but bummed by the power outage.  As for the outcome of the game, the happiness score depends on who you ask.  The Baltimore Ravens won 34-31, so if you ask a San Francisco 49ers fan, I’m pretty sure they’re not too happy about that.

New Orleans was packed with travelers from Los Angeles, Nashville, Chicago, Baltimore/DC, Atlanta, Philadelphia, New York, Baton Rouge, San Francisco and Dallas.  According to JiWire, twice as many fans came from Baltimore than San Francisco, but those from SF are 5x more likely to be seen in the French Quarter, the oldest neighborhood in New Orleans, than those from Baltimore.

Not everyone can be at the game, so the next best way to experience the Super Bowl is by watching it at home, with your buddies, drinking beer and eating pizza, or having a barbecue.

Though some people have shifted their TV-watching habits to streaming on their mobile devices, the majority still prefers watching big events such as the Super Bowl on a big television screen via their cable or satellite provider.

According to Sandvine, overall network usage dropped by 15 percent during the game, which meant that more people were interested in watching the game than doing something on the internet.  The drop has been dubbed as “The Super Dip” when Sandvine noted the phenomena during last year’s Super Bowl.

Still, some preferred to watch online streaming of the game, accounting for over 3 percent of the total network traffic for the evening.  Spikes in network usage were noticed for specific events during the game, including the opening kick-off and the San Francisco 49ers’ final drive to try and win the game as the highlight, followed by Beyonce’s performance, then the blackout.

Mobile impressions


Though most prefered to watch the game on their huge HDTVs, that didn’t stop people from using their mobile devices to share stuff happening at the game, or talk about ads, the blackout and Beyonce’s performance.

Velti’s infographic (below) shows that of all the commercials shown during Super Bowl, the Jack in the Box ad with Shazaam drove the highest spike in mobile engagement.

Twitter reported an average of 231,500 tweets per minute during the blackout, which Velti backed, stating that mobile activity spiked during the power outage and tapered off after the blackout.

Some are calling the event Beyonce’s concert with a football game, since so many viewers tuned in when the singer took center stage.  Beyonce’s performance was so highly anticipated that when she took the stage, people dropped their phones.  Not literally of course, they just didn’t care about their phones as much while the diva electrified the Superdome.

Mobile usage during the game was also affected by the intensity of the game.  When the Ravens took the lead in the first half, mobile use grew, when the San Francisco 49ers caught up in the second half, mobile use fell, and dove sharply in the thrilling final minutes.  In short, they waited for the game to end before they got back to using their mobile devices, not daring to miss the action.

Though everyone seemed to pay more attention to the game than their mobile devices as the game progressed, Californians were much more interested in their handheld device than the game, recording significantly more impressions per minute in the average throughout the game.

But of all the people who were active on their mobile devices during the game, the most active were the ones using Kindle Fire and Samsung Galaxy devices, which could mean that they are the most active Android Second Screeners.