If you were hitting your mobile more this Christmas, you're not alone.

Vodafone says Kiwis consumed 573 terabytes of data on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

That's equivalent to Kiwis streaming approximately 255,000 hours of video in just two days - and a 39 per cent increase over the same period last year.

The most popular times to video-call family and friends far and wide or check out the latest online content was between 8pm and 10pm on both Christmas Day and Boxing Day, with data traffic hitting peak use levels of 18.1TB and 19.5TB respectively, Vodafone says.


Vodafone, Spark and 2degrees all beefed up their mobile coverage around holiday hotspots, with Vodafone deploying "cows" or "cell sites on wheels", among other measures.

"Some of these areas may go to triple the usual data consumption in a single day as people head over to the beach or favourite picnic spot when there's great weather," Vodafone technology director Tony Baird says.

The Commerce Commission's recent annual report on the telco market revealed a couple of trends that have boosted our use of mobiles.

One is that Spark, Vodafone and 2degrees are now offering more generous plans, especially on the data front (although the ComCom is questioning whether "unlimited" plans are really unlimited).

The report also revealed that 40 per cent of NZ households are now mobile-only, and 60 per cent of new connections are shunning a landline - at least for voice calls.

Kiwis keen to send a short message of Christmas cheer (and possibly a note of thanks for their new Christmas goodies) also sent nearly 1.24 million SMS messages or texts per hour at a peak time of 9am on Christmas Day, compared with 1.27 million at last year's Christmas peak.

Not all mobile stats are trending upwards.

Overall a total of 15.57 million texts were sent on Christmas Day this year, compared with 16.8 million last year, a 7.55 per cent decrease, Vodafone says.


People are messaging each other more than ever, but these days they are more likely to do it via Apple's iMessage, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Microsoft's Skype or another free app.