Data usage question

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by RuggedPro, Sep 24, 2010.

  1. RuggedPro macrumors regular

    Sep 19, 2010
    My wife and I just activated our phones this past monday. We opted for the 200mb data plan to see how it went.

    I've been 100% on wifi this week as I haven't left the house but once and never used data while I was gone and I'm at 7mb used.

    My wife says she's downloaded about 30aps mixed wifi and 3g, sent and received 5 emails, not streamed any media (netflix/pandora etc). She is about 360mb used.... She got home today at 5:30pm and I checked her usage. She was at 78mb at 5:30pm.

    We went across the street to our friends house for dinner at 7:45 when she got a text saying she was over her 200mb limit. I checked her usage and it showed 360mb used.

    My question: Where did this data come from in the first place and why did we not get a text until she was over the limit and near halfway into the second allotment?
  2. saving107 macrumors 603


    Oct 14, 2007
    San Jose, Ca
    dial #611 on your phone.

    AT&T will better answer your questions because they have access to your account info.
  3. draz macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2010
    In addition to calling AT&T, check to see if there are any apps running in the background as they can use cellular data without you realizing it. Close the running apps from time to time and there shouldn't be any probs in the future.

    Double tap the Home button to see the apps you recently opened. Tap and hold down one of them until they start shaking and tap the red mark to close them off one by one.
  4. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere


    Apr 16, 2008
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    Your wife probably needs to go with the 2GB plan if she blew past 400mb within 4 days like that.
  5. bowlerman625 macrumors 68020


    Jun 17, 2009
    Chicago, IL area
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    Yeah that's for sure!
  6. brdwygurl macrumors regular

    Jun 23, 2010
    How big were the apps she downloaded? did the emails have attachments? Data does not always post right away (see the fine print on the att website). Many people have reported delays/lags in when data usage posts which makes managing it tricky.
  7. IrishVixen macrumors 68020


    Jun 20, 2010
    ^^^ This.

    I've had an iPhone since they were first introduced, and I've yet to ever go over 200 MB in a month. I'm willing to bet most of her app downloads were over 3G, not wifi, to reach that total in just a couple of days without streaming. While a few backgrounded apps do use data, most don't, and certainly not at that level of consumption. In fact, other than streaming apps, the only big culprits I've seen are the Navigation apps like TomTom and Navigon, or certain social networking apps that track your location regularly.

    If it's not one of those: The first thing your wife needs to remember if she's sticking with the 200 MB plan is you only do what's actually NECESSARY when you're on 3G. That means you need to check how big those apps are before you hit install, or you wait until you're home and on wifi. One app I checked--a simple solitaire game--was 6.8 MB. Multiply that by the 30 she downloaded and you're already over your limit. And that's not a big app by any means. It's easy to get caught up in the fun of being always connected, but as you found, it's easy to go overboard with it too. I never download an app away from wifi unless I need it that minute for something.

    Friend sends you a full res pic in email--you don't need to open it while you're out. Boss sends you an attached report--yeah, that's a necessity. You have to pick and choose. If she's not willing to do that, then you need the 2 GB plan instead. And as you found, you can't rely on AT&T to alert you. If you're even within 50 MB of your limit, it's time to buckle down.

    Please do post back if AT&T says something different when you call! And enjoy your new phones.
  8. Irish Rose macrumors 65816

    May 29, 2010
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    ^ it's definitely not AT&T's responceability to alert you either. They already provide several ways for users to keep track of their data usage. One of which is a free mobile account manager app. I use this a lot, and have found it to be very reliable in terms of my data usage..... OP, as you have already found out, your wife would be better off on the 2GB data plan for now.
  9. RuggedPro thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 19, 2010
    We were told by AT&T that they would alert us.

    It's spelled "responsibility" for future reference.

    In my original post I mentioned I did check her data usage. I did so with the app provided by At&t. We found it to be highly unreliable.

    Thanks to the others for your input. I didn't know app sizes varied greatly. I will check into it. She said the apps she uses the most is some zoo game and facebook. I'll call At&t Monday and see what happens. Only $15 but just wanted an explanation.
  10. IrishVixen macrumors 68020


    Jun 20, 2010
    One thing to check on the Facebook app--I believe it can be set to push status updates out to her phone. If that's the case, and if she gets a lot of those, it could be one of the bigger data culprits.

    Edit: Just looked at it on my husband's phone, and there's a TON of things that can be set to push notifications to the phone. Holy cow. If those are on, turn most or all of them them off, and tell her to remember to only check it while on wifi. Even if all those notifications are only a tiny amount of data each, with a friend list of decent size, that'll add up. It also is one of those apps that can send updates on her location to others, eating up more data.

    Another general thing to keep in mind is that the iphone's camera takes high resolution photos and video. Those produce big files--on a 200 MB plan, you may want to only upload them to the web or send them in mail when on wifi.

    Good luck! I'll be interested to see what AT&T says.
  11. mtnDewFTW macrumors 6502a

    Oct 26, 2009
    San Francisco, CA
    First call ATT.

    Also, when you put the iPhone to 'sleep' (press the power button on top to lock it) it switches to 3G. So anything that happens while your phone is locked happens over 3G. Which could be receiving emails, notifications, etc etc.

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