Like every year Vodafone has released numbers on mobile network usage during New Year's eve between 8 pm and 3 am as this is one of the busiest times of the year. This year, Vodafone says that 185 TB were used during those 7 hours. Let's say uplink and downlink are roughly 9:1 which would result in a total amount of 166.5 TB downloaded during that time. Divided by 7 hours, 60 minutes and 60 seconds and then multiplied by 8 to to get bits instead of bytes results in an average downlink speed at the backhaul link to the wider Internet of 53 Gbit/s. An impressive number, so a single 40 Gbit/s fiber link won't do anymore (if they only had a single site and a single backhaul interconnection provider, which is unlikely). Back in 2011/2012 the same number was 'only' 7.9 Gibt/s.
On the other hand when you compare the 53 Gbit/s for all Vodafone Germany customers to the 30 Gbit/s reached by the uplink traffic during the recent 32C3 congress or the sustained 3 Gbit/s downlink data rate to the congress Wi-Fi generated by 8.000 mobile devices, the number suddenly doesn't look that impressive anymore. Or compare that to the 5000 Gbit/s interconnect peaks at the German Internet Exchange (DE-CIX). Yes, it's a matter of perspective!
If you've come across similar numbers for other network operators please let me know, it would be interesting to compare!