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The Spanish National Statistics Institute (INE) already monitored the mobile phones for its mobility study.

20 November, 2019

The INE reached an agreement with the main mobile operators to carry out a mobility study by using anonymous information from their devices. Throughout the week of 18 November, from Monday until Thursday, to be exact, they monitored the mobile phone of Spaniards to know their mobility.

The mobility study had already started last July.

Although the news appeared in the media some weeks ago, the Spanish National Statistics Institute had already started to work in July to carry out its mobility study.

The exact dates where the information was collected were 20 July and 15 August. They also monitored the mobile phones during the week of 18 to 21 November, and on Sunday, 24 November. The INE will also gather mobility information on 25 December, before the end of the year.

The Spanish National Statistics Institute (INE) already monitored the mobile phones for its mobility study.

The purpose is analysing people’s movements.

The purpose of gathering information is to see which are the most common movements of the Spanish population, thus knowing the places where public services and infrastructures must be provided or increased.

The mobility study will also provide other information such as where do Spanish people go on holiday (within the national territory).

Information is completely anonymous.

According to the INE, the telephone information gathered and provided by the operators, Movistar, Vodafone and Orange, will be completely anonymous, thus helping the count of mobile locations in areas of 15,000 inhabitants on average and, in any case, they will not receive the personal information of the owners of the devices.

How is the INE carrying out the mobility study?

To create this statistical report, the INE divides the Spanish territory into 3,500 cells with a minimum of 5,000 people each.

In low-populated, cells are far higher than in those with a large population. Madrid, for example, is divided in around 128 cells and is practically scaled by neighbourhoods.

El Big Data as a source.

This mobility pilot study, which is included within the statistics renewal that the INE and other European statistic bodies have started, aims to use Big Data as a source to leave behind other ways of data collection such as surveys.

The INE already collaborates with El Corte Inglés, Carrefour and Alcampo and is negotiating with Mercadona and Lidl with the purpose of receiving the prices of the consumer products and their sales.

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