data caps

How much data do I really use?

Meter

Episode 1506

Ed from Clairemont, OK

Ed can't figure out why he's being notified that he's using 150GB of data every month. He doesn't stream or download things. Leo says it's very easy to burn through 150GB a month. Windows updates are in the GBs now. He can go into his network and internet settings of his computer and see how much data he's using on each computer. His router may be able to tell him as well. He can navigate to his router's address in a browser window and it can tell him. If it doesn't, he can get a new router that can.

Why is my iPhone using so much data?

Apple iPhone 7 Plus

Episode 1418

Bill from Simi Valley, CA

Bill has a family plan with Verizon and one of his kids has been using up most of the data resulting in three overage charges. The problem is, he doesn't use it much. Leo says he'll need to look at the phone and see what it says. He should look at the cell usage in the settings. If it roughly matches, then there's something that the iPhone is doing that is burning up bandwidth. The good news is that he can look at the data usage by app in the iPhone's settings.

How can I stream music without exceeding the data cap on my phone?

T-Mobile Music Freedom

Episode 1219

Albert from Henderson, NV

Albert wants to know if there's any way to stream audio on his phone without killing his data caps. Leo says no. It'll use what it uses, but T-Mobile offers a way around this. They have deals with some of the streaming services and they don't count it against your data. T-Mobile calls it "Music Freedom".

T-Mobile is very aggressive with great packages that include stuff like this, which is one of the reasons Leo likes them.

Does a larger mobile phone screen use more data?

Episode 1213

Jeffrey (Captain J) from Port Charles, Florida

Jeffrey wants to know if a larger screen phone uses up more data than a smaller screen phone. Leo says that it could the case when streaming video. Sites like Netflix and YouTube will notice that you're using a high resolution screen and automatically stream higher resolution video, and that definitely uses more data.

How can my iPhone be using so much data?

Episode 1156

Jim from Yorba Linda, CA

Jim has an iPhone 5 through Verizon and he's being nailed for "excessive use of data" with charges over $300 a month, and he has no idea why because nothing has changed in his usage. Verizon claims he's using up to 1 GB a day! But he isn't using even close to that. He doesn't stream video, and is rarely listening to Pandora. Leo says that going into the usage meter in the settings, he can see what the phone thinks he's using. Is the hotspot turned on? Streaming video can easily get 1GB a day if he's not careful.