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Election stats - new mobile record

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Steve Herrmann Steve Herrmann | 13:36 UK time, Thursday, 8 November 2012

BBC coverage of the US election, which my colleague Jon Williams trailed here a couple of days ago, brought the highest traffic to BBC News Online so far this year, and set a new record for us on mobile.

On 7 November, there were 16.4m unique browsers across the website and mobile, 8.1m of which came from the UK. That makes it the highest traffic day of 2012 so far and rivals our two biggest previous days during the August riots and the March Tsunami, in 2011. During the England riots, on 9 August 2011 there were there were 18.2m unique browsers, 10.9m of which came from the UK.

The peak traffic point yesterday was 07:00-08:00 GMT, which saw higher usage than lunchtime, maybe as people checked the results as soon as they woke up. UK usage figures yesterday were 50% higher than the average for 2012, and ex-UK usage was 75% higher than average.

We spent a lot of time working out how to provide the best possible service on mobile, so it's encouraging to see that nearly 5m mobile devices visited BBC News Online yesterday, a record figure for us on mobile, accounting for about 30% of all users yesterday (on an average weekday, we'd expect mobiles to account for about 24% of users).

Steve Herrmann is editor of the BBC News website.


  • Comment number 1.

    'I understand that the BBC had around 100 people in the US to cover this election. That is a staggering waste of licence payer's money and something the Director General needs to answer for.'

    Don't suppose you would be interested to answer the question posed on your editors blog in the comments section?

  • Comment number 2.

    The above is spot on. I would only add that the ones that get the travel jollies seem to be the same old suspects. It's always the same with these big international stories. The select few always seem to get sent overseas with, I assume, a colossal expenses
    allowance. The BBC is riddled with nepotism and old school tie syndrome. Disgraceful

  • Comment number 3.

    @PhilSpace - surely the stats figures being quoted by Steve would be answer enough! If viewership remained average despite the investment in staff there then I would be worried. BBC is doing it's job and well at that - the proof is in the pudding made.

  • Comment number 4.

    I think the public were just eager to know if we were heading toward the end of the world in 2012 as the Mayans predicted - if Romney had been elected I reckon we'd have been well on track!

    To the comments above, how is it a waste of resources when the event clearly has such a big global impact?

  • Comment number 5.

    Steve, are we to inductively conclude from your post that Obama's presidency is likely as disastrous as the 2011 riots or tsunami... now take that, those of you who seem to incessantly comment about BBC's bias in favour of Obama LOL.

    Seriously though, I'm surprised at the level of news consumption on mobile - wouldn't have thought it to be more than 10%

  • Comment number 6.

    Steve, I understand this blog is nothing to do with Newsnight & News Programmes in general, but when will Senior BBC News Managament come onto these pages to explain what is happening? Where is Helen Boaden or Steve Mitchell? They are in charge of BBC News but remain hidden. Are they taking a lead or hiding to protect their jobs? Best wishes Steve and well done on your work with BBC News Online.

  • Comment number 7.

    Broadcasting through mobile is definitely the way forward as tablet devices and smart phone become ubiquitous... curious to hear BBC's views on how this evolves in terms of product offerings going forward. Have already seen some interesting pilots coming out of the BBC Connected Studio initiative here:

  • Comment number 8.

    Compared to American coverage by experts who observed US politics all of their lives, know the system and culture inside out, backwards and forwards, and know all the nuances, BBC was like a bunch of gawkers, tourists looking up at the tall buildings somewhat dazed and confused. Amateurish by American news standards.It would not be acceptable to the US domesting market if it even knew BBC existed.


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