Unless you have an unlimited data plan, you have to monitor your data usage to avoid overage charges. Unfortunately it’s really easy to waste data if you don’t know what causes your mobile device to use it. Take a look at the following five things that tend to use excessive data on mobile phones.
Running Many Apps in the Background
If you don’t exit an app properly, it stays open in the background. This can be bad news for your data usage if it’s an app that connects to and run on the Internet. For instance, your GPS navigation app works even if you’re talking on the phone, so remember to exit the application once you’re done using it. Otherwise, you’ll get charged for the data that’s been wasted trying to locate you at all times.
If you’re concerned about apps running in the background or forget to exit them properly every time, you can find a kill app. It’ll terminate all your open apps with the click of a button, so you don’t waste any more data or money running unnecessary apps on your mobile device.
Using a 3G or 4G Connection Instead of WiFi
Any time you connect to the Internet with your mobile phone, it uses data. The amount varies, dependant upon what you’re doing, but even small amounts of data usage can add up quickly. For instance, it takes more data to load a regular website that has a lot of photos than a website designed for mobile devices (some websites have incorporates responsive web design for this reason).
Additionally, 4G connections use more data than 3G connections. You can easily eliminate some of your data usage simply by switching to a Wi-Fi connection. This is easy to do if you have a home Internet connection. Just make sure that your network is set up with the right ethernet cables so you can connect to the Internet. Many stores and businesses also offer free Wi-Fi, so be on the lookout for them so you don’t have to waste your data.
Streaming Music and Videos
Streaming music and videos is bad for your data usage because it takes more megabytes than a one-time download. For instance, the average phone uses about two megabytes of data for every one minute of YouTube video. Therefore, you should avoid using these apps unless you have a Wi-Fi connection. Otherwise, your data allocation could be used up in a hurry. The worst offenders are YouTube, Netflix, Pandora, and Spotify.
If you have a limited data plan, it’s best to avoid these applications all together because of the amount of data they use for such a short time. Instead of using your mobile phone to stream music or movies, save it for when you get home to your laptop or desktop. This way you’ll save data, money, and have something to look forward when you get back to your home.
Uploading Photos from Your Phone
Being that all 2013 new cell phones on T-Mobile have advanced technology, many people opt to forgo traditional cameras and use their smartphones instead to snap photos and upload them to social networks. What they don’t know is that doing this could use up most of their data. For instance, it takes about 20 megabytes to upload one photo manually. The Instagram app uses a little less, but it still eats your data.
Think about waiting until you get home or otherwise have access to Wi-Fi to upload those snapshots. Although posting the perfect picture on your social media accounts right away for your family and friends to see is tempting, it will cost you in data and in your pockets.
Refreshing Email Constantly
People like to be notified right away when they get a new email. However, a frequent refresh rate will eat away at your data. For instance, most email apps have options for how frequently you want your email refreshed — typically it’s five minutes, 15 minutes, one hour, or daily. If you don’t need quick access to new emails, you should reduce the refresh rate. If you do need direct and frequent access to your email, think about changing your plan.
These are just a few of the top data eaters, but knowing about them and being diligent with your data will save you a lot of money when it comes time to pay your phone bill.
What apps use the most data on your mobile phone? Leave us a comment below and let us know.