High data usage (unknown reason)

Discussion in 'iOS 10' started by dlondon, Oct 31, 2016.

  1. dlondon macrumors 6502

    Sep 6, 2013
    My iPhone 7+ is using a lot of data (WiFi and mobile) but I don't know why. I first noticed the issue when my phone seemed particularly hot one morning, and later discovered I had used 15GB of mobile data in one day. I contacted Apple who unhelpfully suggested that I switched everything off (background refresh, email, etc) to fix the problem. I switched mobile data off completely to prevent overage charges. I then ended up buying extra data as having a mobile with no data is pretty crap.

    When using mobile data, I can see which apps and services are using data. I switched data off for most apps but I noticed that system services/media services was using most of the data (and I can't switch that off separately). The music app had mobile data switched off so I'm not sure what the media services is?

    I downloaded a data usage app which shows how much mobile and WiFi data I am using. It says I use 1-2GB of WiFi data around the time I wake up each day. Apart from switching my alarm off, occasionally checking a few emails or the weather before I get out of bed, I hardly use the phone when I wake up. As it's WiFi, I can't see what activity is using the data.

    Of note:
    • I have iCloud Photo and Apple Music (inc Match).
    • I use Google/OneDrive apps but background refresh is off and neither can use mobile data.
    • I've had some issues with downloading updates for apps. I click update all, the circles appear and then update appears again. Updates eventually happen. Seems better with 10.1. App store has mobile data switched off but it could be using WiFi. I updated all apps last night so it is not the reason for the 2GB used this morning.
    • I have a problem with iCloud backup (in that it hasn't backed up for months) but I think backups are attempted when the phone is plugged in and on standby (which wouldn't explain why the data starts the moment I wake the device up).
    • I restored this device rather than a clean install. I should probably do a clean install of iOS but I hate having to reinstall all the apps individually (and losing some of the data). Plus downloading all music again is a pain when you have Apple Music/Match (it's not the same as transferring your own music over from iTunes).
    Anyone else experiencing data issues or have any ideas what could be causing my high data usage?
  2. addamas macrumors 6502


    Apr 20, 2016
  3. dlondon thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 6, 2013
    What exactly should I be checking? It looks ok to me.
  4. M. Gustave macrumors 68000

    M. Gustave

    Jun 6, 2015
    Grand Budapest Hotel
    Go to Settings > Cellular, and you can see the data usage by app.
  5. Mr. Y macrumors regular

    Oct 12, 2011
    What cellular provide are you using? Some providers "bundle" data usages which are then reflected at certain times of the day on your cellular bill. I noticed with AT&T cellular bundles go through at around 2:00 AM but I am fast asleep at that point and no e-mails are coming through at that time.

    Another thing you can do, which I started to do when I am home and have Wi-Fi on, it appears that my phone struggles between cellular and Wi-Fi. To resolve that, I turn on airplane mode, then switch on the Wi-Fi so it only picks up the Wi-Fi signal. This has helped reduced cellular data usage.
  6. thebro20 macrumors regular

    Sep 7, 2014
    Ive been having the same issue. For me the largest use in "system services" was DNS. and now its showing it was "time and location".
  7. dlondon, Nov 1, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2016

    dlondon thread starter macrumors 6502

    Sep 6, 2013
    It's system services/media services that is using the data. I'm using lots of WiFi data but this is not shown in the setting (i.e. I can't see if it's system services or one of the apps using the data). 1-2GB of data when I'm hardly doing anything is a concern.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 1, 2016 ---
    I'm with EE in the UK and only have 20GB of mobile data. I have never gone over my allowance until this month (I've got WiFi at home and at work). It used 15GB in a few hours (as well as completely draining my battery). If the data usage is purely system services, my options for restricting data are limited, unless I start to restrict the features of the phone.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 1, 2016 ---
    For me it's been media services, even with data for all music apps switched off. The 3GB was used in a morning.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 1, 2016 ---
    This is an example of WiFi data when I wake up...


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6 October 31, 2016