Those huge activation numbers Andy Rubin recently mentioned highlight both a blessing and a curse for carriers these days. Reuters has revealed the curse by announcing that, on average, Android users consume the most mobile data compared to all other smartphone users. They place the blame squarely on the shoulders of Android phones' "better cameras and video recorders, and software for editing the footage." ZING. These days, Android phones are typically launching with 5 or 8 megapixel cameras (like the HTC Evo 4G, shown above) and people are taking advantage of the increased resolution when shooting pictures or video.
As carriers like Verizon continue to push heavily for their customers to upgrade their feature phones to smartphones alongside pricey data plans, they must be aware of the increased strain of those phones on their networks. Anyone with an iPhone can tell you endless tales of woe with AT&T, which can largely be attributed to their 3G network simply not being robust enough when the iPhone 3G was launched back in 2008.
So, is it possible that Android users on other networks could see this same problem in the future? One solution are the "4G" data-centric networks Verizon and Sprint are using, which will likely attract the power users who consume the most data, leaving less strain on 3G networks for the average user. Still, there is only so much bandwidth to go around so this issue is far from resolved. [Reuters via BGR]