MapBox Labs has mapped out 280 million tweets from around the world to look at smartphone types. Tweets posted from Smartphone devices were analyzed in order to understand global and local geographic patterns of Android, iPhone, and Blackberry devices. Color coded by smartphone type, green dots represent Android, red for iPhone, purple for Blackberry, and mauve for all other phones, the geotagged tweets show some clear geographic patterns when it comes to preferred mobile phone usage. Eric Gundersen, CEO of MapBox, explained in a blog post that the visualization was created with the help of Gnip who worked with MapBox’s Tom MacWright and data artist Eric Fischer (who has created a wide body of work with geotagged data).
Users can zoom in and out to explore various areas around the world. Type a location in the query box to zoom to that area or hit the arrow to zoom to your current location. Click on the smartphone names to toggle those tweets on and off. There are street names and locations labeled on the map but unfortunately those labels are buried under the tweet overlay.
Some areas look like Christmas trees, with a battle of green and red dots across the landscape. A zoomed in look at the area of Los Angeles shows a strong dominance of iPhones along the Wilshire and Santa Monica Boulevard corridors, along with a noticeable cluster of red at Los Angeles Airport.
Zoom out further and it becomes clear that those tweeting on the go predominately originate from urban areas and along major transportation routes as a zoomed out view of the United States demonstrates.
While the iPhone dominates in the U.S., the purple glow around major cities in Mexico indicates that the Blackberry holds more of a presence. With the exception red clusters in Costa Rica, most of Central America and the northern part of South America also blaze purple with Blackberry users.
Panning and zooming around other areas of the world show additional geographic clustering of smartphone preferences.