/ How big a data allowance do you need for a Smartphone

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Eric9Points - on 03 May 2012
Thinking of getting a new phone and was just looking at the contracts and wondering how much data the average smartphone user is likely to download per month.

pog100 - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:
I have 500mb and just about use it each month. That is with almost constant web surfing, forums, some face book etc. but very little video or audio, or downloading large files or apps except when using WiFi.
Depends on what you do, but I would prefer 1gb or unlimited.
Nexonen on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

500Mb is more than enough for me, but you would never watch videos on it.
col3 on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:
Clearly, if you watch many videos you'll need over 500GB. However, if you're like me and watch few videos per month, it's not worth paying for more than 500GB.

To put it into perspective, I get 250GB a month and have never used it all up, not even close (only way to watch a lot of videos). I'm a 21-year-old student. I honestly tried to use it up by looking through emails, browsing websites, etc. most days and still didn't use it up. My boyfriend has 100GB and manages fine (but he barely uses it). Hope this helps!
simon c on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points: I rarely go near the top end of 500mb but i do utilise wifi when I can, bt fon is handy for that. I save the high end usage for those periods when I have access to wifi.
Eric9Points - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Nicole:

I've no interest in watching videos, the screens aren't big enough.

It's sounding like a 500 Mb contract is more than enough.
benghull - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points: If you can go with 3 most of there plans have unlimited internet, if you have an iPhone likely you will use over 500mb.
Toby S - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Nicole:

500Gb? Are you sure? ;-)

To the OP, I'm on 750Mb per month and I rarely get anywhere close to that. However I have free wifi at work and wifi at home so the phone connects to that for most of that time.
alooker - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points: I struggled with 500mb, general surfing doesn't use too much but I like to use the tracking for riding my bike, that uses a fair bit over a month. Average would be between 500 and 1Gb I would guess. Maybe start off low and see how you go, they're not going to complain if you want to give them more money...
Wide_Mouth_Frog - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:
I have a 500mb contract and even with tracking my road cycling, I get to between 100mb-120mb
Bimbler - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

I'd go for 500 to start. More importantly I'd go to town on the haggling to get a good deal...
jamesofdeath - on 03 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

I work in mobile sales. Yougov recently did a study which concluded that the average amount of data a smartphone user uses is 248MB per month. Don't be fooled into thinking you need unlimited data on your price plan as 500MB is more than enough for the average user. Things to avoid are: streaming video (you can watch video clips but not all month long), streaming internet radio, Skype, GPS (most smartphones have A-GPS which will burn your data if it's left on, auto updating sites (such as livescores.com) and downloading large files.

If you have no intention of using these features on a regular day to day basis then like I say, 500MB is fine.

If you're unsure then look at O2 (they don't bill you once you've gone over your allowance, just slow your connection), T-Mobile (offer unlimited browsing on all price plans) and Tesco Mobile (you can cap the bill). 3 are also good but only really if you're looking at an unlimited deal.
Morgan Woods - on 04 May 2012
In reply to jamesofdeath:
> (In reply to Eric9Points)
GPS (most smartphones have A-GPS which will burn your data if it's left on, auto updating sites (such as livescores.com)

i don't think GPS uses your data allowance since it can operate outside areas of mobile reception.
antdav - on 04 May 2012
I just changed contracts and you have to be careful of the small print. The T-mobile allowance is for downloads, iplayer, youtube etc. Emails and browsing aren't included so when you hit your limit you dont end up having a big bill or a useless smart phone. May be worth having a detailed look around at all suppliers rules on limits.
Alex Slipchuk on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points: twice the length from the middle to the end. Oh Sorry that's how a piece of string is ;)
Dominion - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

It's also worth looking at whatever OS your phone is going to run, and looking at tools that can monitor your data usage.

On Android, I use ZDBox for this - and it's very useful for other things as well, and is free, and no advertising either.



I'll be the exception to the rule for data usage, as my phone(s) are set to only use data through wifi, as I don't want to be paying 15 top-up per month for data on a PAYG phone to get 250Mb per month.

So, since I got my first Android phone 8 months or so ago I've used - accidentally - about 10Mb in total...
cap'nChino - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points: I average 26 megs a month.
Juki - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Morgan Woods:
> i don't think GPS uses your data allowance since it can operate outside areas of mobile reception.

A-GPS does use the data connection. If you disable the assisted mode then it works like a normal GPS.
A Downing - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

Not sure if its still available but vodafone did a test drive for the first 3 months of my contract which let you use as much as you wanted then at the end I could choose a plan accordingly.

Andy
A Downing - on 04 May 2012
In reply to A Downing:

Also worth noting is that vodafone have an iPhone app which makes it easy to check how much you have used and how much is remaining.

Andy
ads.ukclimbing.com
Neil Williams - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

I would probably want 1GB or more. I'm still on a very old (genuinely - no fair use policy) unlimited O2 contract at present, but when I change I will probably go to 3 for that reason.

Not because I use masses of data regularly, but because I want to *be able to* use masses of data when I want.

Neil
jamesofdeath - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Morgan Woods:

A-GPS is different to GPS. A-GPS uses a triangulation method between a satellite and mobile network mast to determine your location. Most smartphones automatically switch to this when your GPS signal is weak or cannot be found. This uses data.
Mikkel - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Neil Williams:

I just left O2 due to their new data plans, where you have to pay for massive ammount of minuttes to get the high end data plans.
Also used to be on the unlimited data from O2.

Think data usage vary a lot depending on how they meassure it.
My phone will tell me a data usage specific to programme, and the browser (opera) also gives the data usage but there is a huge difference in the two.
Still waiting to see my usage from T mobile to see how much they say i have used.

On O2 i used an average of 740 Mb a month, without streaming much media.
So far i have used it more on my new contract with T mobile as signal is better at work, and the phones listed usage is a lot less than what O2 say i used to use......
Dave B on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

As you can see it varies hugely.

I turn off the Data connection when I'm not using it and get through about 10-20% of my 250 allowance each month, rising to about 50% if I'm away a lot... Wifi at home, and having a computer on my desk at work really cut down my need.

My colleague who has 500, uses around 240-300 each month... He also has wifi at home... NOt sure how he manages that much to be honest!

lost1977 - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

i'm with orange and 250mg which i never come near to using (wifi@home), i use my smartphone a lot for listening to music but orange give me free use of deezer (like spotify) and it doesnt come out of my allowance
Fraser on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

My allowance is 500Mb/mo. and of that, I generally use about 50-60Mb. Very occasionally I'll go up to 100Mb, but never anywhere near my allowance.
dissonance - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

as per other responses. Really depends on what you want to do but 250-500mb should be sufficient for most users, particularly if you use wi-fi when at home.
If you start using it in tethered mode then you may well start breaching that, particularly if the laptop or whatever decides to download a few patches.
Toby S - on 04 May 2012
In reply to A Downing:
> (In reply to Eric9Points)
>
> Not sure if its still available but vodafone did a test drive for the first 3 months of my contract which let you use as much as you wanted then at the end I could choose a plan accordingly.
>
> Andy

It is, bought a phone for my a couple of months ago on Vodafone and they're still doing it.
M0nkey - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points: I changed contract recently. The phone guy was able to tell me that my average usage was 130mb per month. I occasionally stream music over data, look at Facebook etc a little bit and do a bit of surfing. I also do my emails over data.

For me at least 500mb is loads. If you dont have WiFi at home however you might use it.
A Longleat Boulderer - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:

I don't have internet at my house and use my phone for everything. I have 1GB and regularly get close or go slightly over and have to pay 3 for a 100MB bolt on.
Si dH - on 04 May 2012
In reply to Eric9Points:
I have 500mb, was worried about this when I signed up but never end up using more than about 300mb.

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