After becoming the number one shopping app by total downloads in the U.S. in 2017, Wish has reportedly become a concern to wireless carriers. That concern primarily comes down to the amount of data usage it's associated with. Of course, the nearly 100MB per month of cellular data consumption per user pales in comparison to the 384 MB per month Wish users consume via Wi-Fi – with figures totaling out at around 481 MB per month per user. It also falls well short of the total consumption of users for YouTube (4.5 GB), Netflix (2 GB), or Snapchat (1.4 GB). However, it ranked higher in usage than either Twitter and Snapchat, which saw consumption at around 406 MB and 351 MB per month, respectively. The key concern is also not how much users are consuming data spread out over the course of a month. Since Wish is primarily a shopping application, network operators have to take considerations for spikes in traffic associated with holiday seasons and peak shopping times.
The peaks in question also affect the bigger apps, with more users communicating or consuming media during those times. It also goes without saying that the 4G LTE networks used now are much more robust and less likely to suffer a major breakdown caused by overuse of the network during peak usage periods. That's without even taking the advent of 5G networks into account – which are expected to both serve mobile customers and take some of the strain off of 4G networks. The unique challenge presented by Wish is that it hasn't simply become another high-usage application adding to the burden carriers need to shoulder. Regardless of the advances, the possibility of a network crashing due to overuse is not necessarily impossible during usage spikes. The app's primary means to generate sales is through the use of large images with price tags, shown a list or column and rows format.
Since more users are coming online every year, mobile carriers are offsetting increases in mobile activity and data consumption by ramping up network expansion and densification efforts. At the same time, most are also preparing for a new wave of even more robust networking with 5G. Bearing that in mind, whether or not there is any actual merit behind any concerns the popularity of the app is causing is something that remains to be seen.