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How can I control how much data I use on my mobile?

The easiest way to keep data use in check is using the settings on your phone, as described below.

If you are going to be using data regularly we recommend you choose a mobile plan with inclusive data or purchase a data bundle. However, be wary of streaming HD video when on a mobile data network as this can quickly eat up your data allowances – remember that usage when on a Wi-Fi network does not count as part of your data plan so if you think you are going to be using a lot of data try and log on to a Wi-Fi network first.

You can check how much data you have left on your bundle or plan by texting DATACHECK to 8100, or check how much data you’ve used when roaming text ROAMINGDATACHECK to 8100.

Data roaming charges may be high so it’s best to turn Data Roaming off on your phone and only turn it on when you need it.


If you have an Android phone click on ‘Data usage’ in your phone settings. Here you can select any time period (we recommend you set a 1 month period that works in the same time period as your data bundle) and see the data usage in that time period. It also lets you set a mobile data limit to stop data usage once you reach a certain level or an alert to send you a notification when data reaches a certain level.

You can also see which apps are using most data and clicking on each app will give you details of foreground use (data used whilst physically using the app) and background use (e.g. updates and information polling done when you don’t have the app open). You can even disable background data for each app when on the mobile data network so that this is only done when connected to a Wi-Fi network.


Open Settings and click Cellular (or General → Usage → Cellular Usage depending on your iPhone model). Scroll down to "Cellular Data Usage". Your usage information will be listed. The "Current Period" does not automatically reset for your billing period so you will need to reset it yourself every time you have a new data bundle for the information here to be accurate. You can reset them by scrolling to the bottom of the screen and tapping the Reset button.

For each app that is installed on your device, you may turn off or on cellular data so you can control what apps have access to cellular data and which ones work on Wi-Fi only. Another action you can take to reduce mobile data usage is to Disable Background App Refresh (this will also help you save battery life). Simply tap Settings > General > Background App Refresh. You can also Disable cellular data for automatic downloads. Simply tap Settings > iTunes & App Store > and tap the Use Cellular Data switch to turn off.

A default feature on most iPhones is to have ‘Wi-Fi Assist’ enabled. Wi-Fi Assist, is designed so you can stay connected to the Internet even if you have a poor Wi-Fi connection. For example, if you're using Safari with a poor Wi-Fi connection and a webpage doesn't load, Wi-Fi Assist will activate and automatically switch to mobile data so that the webpage continues to load. This can happen without you notice and may mean high mobile data use when you think you’re on a Wi-Fi connection. If you don't want your iOS device to stay connected to the Internet when you have a poor Wi-Fi connection, you can disable Wi-Fi Assist. Go to Settings > Cellular. Then scroll down and tap Wi-Fi Assist. With iOS 9.3, you can see how much cellular data you’ve used when Wi-Fi Assist is turned on.