UNDERSTANDING WHERE YOUR DATA IS BEING USED

Lots of apps and activities use mobile data, each using a different amount. This page helps explain in more detail and shows you how to check where you’re using your data. There are also some helpful pointers on how you can reduce your data usage.

On this page

Where does my data go?

Adjust the settings on your device to reduce data use

Adjust the settings on your Apps to reduce data use

Check your phone settings to see what your data has been used on

What to do if you need to increase your data allowance

Where does my data go?

Connecting to the internet over our network use some of your mobile data allowance. But, some activities use more of your allowance than others.

Viewing web pages on a browser and sending or receiving emails generally use a small amount of data but watching catch-up TV, or YouTube videos uses significantly more.

These figures give you an idea of how much data certain activities use. They’re based on averages, so your actual usage may be a little higher or lower.

Estimated data use by activity

Activity Estimated data use
Web browsing 1 – 4MB per minute
Uploading Photos 1.5MB per photo (depending on image quality)
Facebook 1 – 2MB per minute
Maps navigation 100 - 200KB per minute
Music Streaming 1 – 2MB per minute (standard sound quality)
Skype/Video Call 90MB – 1.4GB per hour (depending on quality)
YouTube/Video Streaming 2 – 3MB per minute
Web browsing
Estimated data use 1 – 4MB per minute
Uploading Photos
Estimated data use 1.5MB per photo (depending on image quality)
Facebook
Estimated data use 1 – 2MB per minute
Maps navigation
Estimated data use 100 - 200KB per minute
Music Streaming
Estimated data use 1 – 2MB per minute (standard sound quality)
Skype/Video Call
Estimated data use 90MB – 1.4GB per hour (depending on quality)
YouTube/Video Streaming
Estimated data use 2 – 3MB per minute

1MB = 1024KB      1GB = 1024MB

Adjust your device settings to reduce data use

Are you using your data allowance too quickly? Changing how you do things and adjusting some of the settings on your device can reduce your data usage:

  • Do software/firmware updates whilst connected to wi-fi
  • Switch off automatic updates and update your Apps manually instead
  • Turn off Location services when you’re not using them — this saves battery life too
  • Stop Apps from auto-downloading content when you’re not using them
  • Turn wi-fi assist off — wi-fi assist lets your device connect using mobile data if your wi-fi is weak
Use our device guides if you need help making any of these changes.

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Adjust the settings of installed Apps to reduce data use

Many popular Apps have controls within the in-app settings menu that limit how much data they use. For example:

  • Video streaming Apps like Netflix and YouTube allow you to change the video quality. Standard quality uses less data than HD.
  • Facebook’s video auto-play lets videos automatically start playing as you scroll through your news feed. You can stop when you’re connected to mobile data to reduce your data usage.

Open the Apps you’ve installed and check their settings to see if they’ve got controls to reduce your mobile data usage.

Check your phone settings to see where your data has been used

Still using more data than expected? Just check which apps or features use your mobile data. Most devices have a data monitor in Settings which shows where you’re using the most data.

Here’s how to find it on some common devices:

Apple devices:
Go to Settings and choose Mobile Data. Scroll down to the Mobile Data section to see a list of your apps and the amount of data they’ve used.

Top Tip: If you haven’t used this setting before, the data use shown is what’s accumulated since you got your phone, or since you last reset your phone. Tap ‘Reset Statistics’ at the bottom to start afresh.

Android devices:
Go to Settings then choose Data Usage. You can see all apps and the amount of data they’ve used.

Top Tip: You can change the dates to reflect your bill date and get a more accurate view of your data usage over a specific period of time.

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Do you need to increase your data allowance?

Are you frequently finishing your data allowance? Then you might want to change your price plan to one with a higher data allowance. You don’t need to agree a new contract to do this, you’ll just receive more data on your new plan until the end of your existing contract.

To do this, just contact our Customer Service team on 150 from your EE phone or 07953 966 250 from any other phone.

If you don’t want to change your plan, you can buy a data-add to get additional data as a one-off as and when you need it.

Find out how to buy a data add-on

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