The days of unlimited data usage are becoming a thing of the past as Internet Service Providers (ISPs) switch to tiered data plans. This is at a time when mobile devices are becoming increasingly data hungry as users’ demand for real time data also increases. Consequently, many mobile broadband users may find they are reaching their plan’s data limits earlier each month. This trend will only increase as programmers continue to create useful applications that require continuous real time data over the Internet. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to reduce the amount of broadband data your mobile devices use.
1. Use Wi-Fi Whenever Possible –
Although technically not a way to reduce data usage, using a free Wi-Fi connection is a way to reduce the amount of data usage charged to your plan. So unless you have an unlimited data plan, you should use free Wi-Fi hotspots whenever available.
2. Turn Off Automatic Updates –
Most mobile devices have settings to automatically check for updates to their operating system. If an update is found, then it is downloaded automatically. Although it is very important to keep your software updated, you can reduce the data usage charged against your account by turning automatic updates off and manually downloading the updates instead. This way you can schedule your downloads to times when you are using a free Wi-Fi connection.
3. Avoid Streaming Videos –
An hour of streaming video can easily eat up 200 megabytes of your precious monthly broadband data. You should avoid streaming videos sites such as YouTube unless you are connected to a free Wi-Fi network.
4. Use Advertisement Blockers –
Many web browsers offer options to turn off the automatic playing of videos on web pages. So unless you enjoy paying for the privilege of watching advertisements, you should turn that option off.
5. Online Games –
Yes, online games are fun, but they can use up a lot of data. If you must play online games, then try to play them only when your mobile device is using a free Wi-Fi connection.
These are just a few of the ways you can reduce your mobile broadband data use. Your Internet Service Provider wants you to use as much data as possible. That’s how they make their profit. Fortunately, the data usage tips above can save you money if you find yourself going over your monthly data limit.
Laura also recommends looking into MiFi, especially if you are in a home full of smartphone users.