View all newsletters
Sign up for our free email newsletters

Fighting for quality news media in the digital age.

  1. Comment
April 15, 2013updated 16 Apr 2013 8:16pm

Five Guardian graphs that show how tablets are changing web consumption

By Jon Bernstein

Early last week I noted how this graph from the Financial Times perfectly illustrated how web consumption via smart devices (tablet computers and smartphones) had changed traditional weekend consumption patterns. That FT graph also demonstrated how weekday patterns had altered too with a pre- and post- work spike most likely via mobile phone rather than tablet. 

Equally compelling — and instructive — are the graphs below from the Guardian, courtesy of Anthony Sullivan, the paper's group product manager for core journalism products. Sullivan was a panellist at last week's Press Gazette News on the Move conference and was due to show these graphs during a session I was chairing. 

The first law of audio visual at these kinds of events is that it rarely works as planned. And sure enough we couldn't show the slides. Instead Anthony manfully described what the audience would have seen. So here they are now with some of his commentary from last week. 

1. Print newspaper consumption across the day (Dark blue line)

"Naturally there is a spike in the morning when people are buying the paper but interestingly there's another peak later in the afternoon and that kind of inspired some of the thinking around the iPad 'Edition' app."

Guardian Graph showing newspaper consumption habits across the day

2. Traditional website consumption across the day (Red line)

Content from our partners
Mather Economics and InsurAds combine to help publishers boost revenue
Press Gazette publishes ultimate guide to reader conversion and monetisation
Slow online ads cost UK publishers £50m a year: Here's how to fix them

"When you overlay the desktop you see the familiar lunchtime spike in traffic."

Traditional Guardian website consumption patterns across the day

3. Mobile website consumption across the day (Light blue line)

"If you then look at m dot [Guardian's mobile-optimised website] the peak's in the morning. But actually the highest peak for m dot is in the evening, about 10pm."

Consumption of Guardian's mobile optimised site across the day

4. Mobile app consumption across the day (Orange line)

Mobile apps consumption across the day


5. Consumption of Guardian websites via tablets across the day (Green line)

"When you look at tablets — and this is tablet users looking at — there's a big, big shift to the right hand side. So these are people who are at home, that's what we think because about 93 per cent of that activity is coming over WiFi. So it's not really people on the go, most of this is happening at home. And what's interesting is what are those users doing at that time. There's a device sitting next to them and there are probably other devices … running in the room, probably their television. I think the challenge for us … is what does that mean for content. So what's our content proposition on a tablet?"

Tablet consumption of the Guardian websites across the day

You can watch the whole of News of the Move here. The panel debate — "How to make journalism work on tablet computers" — which featured the Guardian's Anthony Sullivan as well as Lee Wilkinson of Hearst Magazines, Alex Watson from Dennis Publishing and Trinity Mirror's Chris Ellis, starts at 23 minutes 50 seconds. 

Jon Bernstein is a freelance digital media consultant. You can read his personal blog here.

Email to point out mistakes, provide story tips or send in a letter for publication on our "Letters Page" blog

Select and enter your email address Weekly insight into the big strategic issues affecting the future of the news industry. Essential reading for media leaders every Thursday. Your morning brew of news about the world of news from Press Gazette and elsewhere in the media. Sent at around 10am UK time. Our weekly does of strategic insight about the future of news media aimed at US readers. A fortnightly update from the front-line of news and advertising. Aimed at marketers and those involved in the advertising industry.
  • Business owner/co-owner
  • CEO
  • COO
  • CFO
  • CTO
  • Chairperson
  • Non-Exec Director
  • Other C-Suite
  • Managing Director
  • President/Partner
  • Senior Executive/SVP or Corporate VP or equivalent
  • Director or equivalent
  • Group or Senior Manager
  • Head of Department/Function
  • Manager
  • Non-manager
  • Retired
  • Other
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
Thank you

Thanks for subscribing.

Websites in our network