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Lies, damned lies, and statistics... and the iPhone

by Davin Wilfrid

April 28, 2010

By Davin Wilfrid, ERP Expert

Fast Company reports today that the Android mobile platform now accounts for more mobile Web traffic than the iPhone:

This is all US-only--internationally, the iPhone is much better established than Android. But here in the States, Android accounted for 46% of online mobile traffic, compared with Apple's 39%. The other players, by the way, don't even enter the picture. RIM's BlackBerry phones are in third place, with 7%, and Palm's struggling WebOS only eked out 3% despite a recent Verizon launch.

According to Fast Company, this is good news for Google, which developed Android and owns the ad platform (AdMob) that serves it.

That may be true, but there's something missing here. I suspect that mobile traffic is higher on Android because the Android application market is less robust than Apple's. Like many iPhone owners, I spend a far greater percentage of my time toying with apps like Words with Friends, Crosswords, MLB At Bat, Seafood Watch, Word Warp, Paper Toss, and iDoodle than I do surfing the net.

Statistics are funny that way. My colleague Laura Casasanto recently wrote an article for ERP Expert on strategies for using good data quality metrics to prove the value of a data governance strategy. In that article, Jason McClain of Deloitte points out the importance of using the right statistical approach.

For example, if you have 47,987 records with 49,212 rule-level exceptions, that would give you an exception rate of 107%. However, those exceptions may only exist in 17,345 records, meaning only 37.7% of records are flawed (see below).

Subscribers can read Laura's full article at the ERP Expert Web page. In the meantime, feel free to email me at davin [dot] wilfrid [at] if you're up for a game of Words with Friends.


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