Which US City Gets Up Earliest?

Last week, Nate Silver posted a blog examining how much major US cities differ in terms of when they arrive at work. Using survey data collected by the American Community Survey, Silver showcased the average time people say they arrive at work across the country. Inspired by this experiment, we thought it would be interesting to look at Bing usage as a proxy for when people get online, start work or otherwise wake up.

Here is what we found:



 (Wide version of graphic is available here.)

When we examined daily average across all 25 cities, we also found an interesting pattern, Monday through Friday people tend to wake up earlier as the week progresses.


Chart 2


How did we come up this?

We calculated the time at which we receive 50% of daily peak traffic from each metro area in their local time zones. The 25 cities follow the same general curve across all seven days of the week. While the patterns are the same, we did see a 43 minute shift between the earliest risers and the late risers.


Chart one


Based on this, the metro area that wakes up earliest is San Francisco, reaching 50% of traffic at 6:43AM and on the other side of the country is the latest, New York City, which achieves 50% of peak traffic 43 minutes later at 7:32AM.

The data presented another interesting pattern. Across the country, starting with Monday, our calculated average wake time gets consistently earlier every single weekday. By Friday morning, we’re getting up a full 22 minutes earlier than on Monday.

We hope you found this interesting. Let us know what you think on Twitter (@Bing.)

– Juan Miguel Lavista Ferres, Principal Data Scientist, Microsoft