5 unexpected apps that drain your data

Unexpected apps that drain your data

We all know that video and TV streaming, as well as graphic heavy, multiplayer online games, eat up our data. Applications like YouTube and Netflix have been estimated to use up to 8765.67mb and 4916.16mb per month respectively*. But all too often, our monthly data limits disappear with no obvious explanation. Here we look at 5 unexpected apps that are data-chew happy.

1. Spotify

Spotify welcome screen
Spotifty playlist

Designed for music streaming, the Spotify app enables you to browse, search and listen to millions of songs wherever you are. It might only be audio, but, although it doesn’t eat up as much data as video, if you use it every day it can do some serious damage to your monthly plan. Instead, listen offline.

Application data usage based on estimated average monthly use: 2817.93mb – 137% of a 2GB monthly data plan.*

2. Google Maps

Google Maps pinned in New York

Tailored satellite maps at the touch of a button, the Google Maps app enables you to navigate your way around the world. But whilst it may stop you getting lost, it will also do a good job at losing your data. Retrieving images in real time, and often ticking along in the background, it can use up to a megabyte a minute.

Application data usage based on estimated average monthly use: 623.33mb – 30% of a 2GB monthly data plan.*

3. Facebook

Facebook app sign in screen
Facebook app photo sync

Offering mobile access to this popular free social networking site, the Facebook app lets you update your status, check-in and view your newsfeed on the hop. It may not appear to be a big data user, but the danger lies in two main areas: photos and persistence. Posting 10 photos a day could eat up most of a 200mb plan; plus the app is always running in the background whittling away your data.

Application data usage based on estimated average monthly use: 626.15mb – 30% of a 2GB monthly data plan.*

4. Angry Birds

Most popular smartphone video apps

One of the most downloaded mobile game apps, Angry Birds requires logic, force and skill to catapult the angry birds to break the defenses of the greedy pigs. It may not be one of the high graphic, multi-player online games but it can eat up your data in surprising ways. The free versions are ad supported, which need data to run. Bragging about your high score? This will also be transmitted over your data connection.

Application data usage based on estimated average monthly use: 504.20mb – 24% of a 2GB monthly data plan.*

5. Amazon


Allowing you to shop virtually from your smartphone, the Amazon app lets you browse, search, get product details, read reviews and purchase millions of products from a wide range of merchants. Unless you were buying a lot of stuff, you probably wouldn’t even think about it using up your data – but even when you’re not using it, it uses up your bandwidth with a range of background services.

Application data usage based on estimated average monthly use:207.37mb – 10% of a 2GB monthly data plan.

These five are by no means exclusive. Many of our favorite apps can be sneaky when it comes to data usage. How much it matters, really depends on plan – 4G can offer some great pre-paid options.

Cell phone web settings

So what’s the solution? Monitor your usage (try apps such as Data Usage, My Data Manager and My Verizon Mobile), use WiFi whenever it’s available and check your settings – disable push notifications, turn off data and set apps to only sync periodically to prevent them constantly updating.

Wifi zone

*figures are highest estimated across a range of IOS and Android phones and app versions.
Source: http://knowmyapp.org/default.aspx

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