How much monthly data do you need?

theanimala

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 2, 2007
329
105
Looking to leave my company's blackberry phone plan for a byod. Right now I have no worries over daa, but since I will now be paying I want to be smart about this. I am going to go for the iPhone 5 once it's announced, an add it to my wife's existing Verizon plan with a share everything plan. She has 2gb of data with her iPhone 4s, but hardly uses anything as she is nearly always in wifi. I travel more or work but mostly will use it for web, email, local music, etc. one thing I plan on using a few times a week is the navigation feature in ios6. Would 2gb be enough, will 4gb even be enough?

Thanks in advance for the help.
 

boomhower

macrumors 68000
Oct 21, 2011
1,559
50
At work I'm the road 12hrs a day 14 days a month and I use around 1.5GB's a month. But I don't stream much audio or video. That's just a lot of tapatalk and games. My wife uses around 500MB's a month. I would start with a 2GB plan and go up if you need to.
 

ucfgrad93

macrumors P6
Aug 17, 2007
17,812
8,667
Colorado
I have a 2GB plan and usually don't even reach a gigabyte in a month. I use wifi whenever I can. For navigation, I bought the TomTom app. It is pricey at $40 but it doesn't use data and gets a signal even when I don't have cell coverage. It worked great on my recent trip to Mount Rushmore.
 

theanimala

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 2, 2007
329
105
I have a 2GB plan and usually don't even reach a gigabyte in a month. I use wifi whenever I can. For navigation, I bought the TomTom app. It is pricey at $40 but it doesn't use data and gets a signal even when I don't have cell coverage. It worked great on my recent trip to Mount Rushmore.
That's a great point about TomTom, if it saves on data it will quickly pay for itself.
 

Want300

macrumors 65816
Oct 12, 2011
1,194
2
St. Louis, MO
I have wifi at home and at work, I use my phone quite a lot still, just not streaming video... I will still use Pandora sometimes though. I never use over 1 GB...
 

vistadude

macrumors 65816
Jan 3, 2010
1,423
1
I use close to 3 GB every month but that's because I use Skype a lot, including video chat. I also download about 200 mb of podcasts per week.
 

0007776

Suspended
Jul 11, 2006
6,474
8,163
Somewhere
I have wifi almost all the time and get by with 100MB for when I don't have it, 2 GB should be plenty unless you are always using it off of wifi.
 

MattMJB0188

macrumors 68000
Dec 28, 2009
1,979
504
I feel bad for those on tiered plans. Paying probably $30/mo for 3GB and always being on wifi. AT&T loves you guys!!
 

BuckeyeMac

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2012
372
1
Thank god I have unlimited....I am averaging over 4gb a month on 3G with my 3Gs.

I stream music almost everyday in my office. I use maps everyday for driving. I surf the web quite a bit during the day as well.
 

NastyComputers

macrumors regular
Aug 14, 2010
144
25
Tehachapi CA
My wife drives about 1.5 hours a day and streams pandora the whole time and watches netflix on her hour lunch break plus the little things here and there and in 6 days into our billing cycle she was a a GB, she get the text from ATT every month saying she needs to slow it down or they are going to slow her down! Thankfully we have the unlimited plan still!
 

nw9

macrumors regular
May 1, 2012
115
0
I travel more or work but mostly will use it for web, email, local music, etc. one thing I plan on using a few times a week is the navigation feature in ios6. Would 2gb be enough, will 4gb even be enough?
I don't know if Blackberry let's you keep track of your usage amounts, but that's the best way to know exactly how much you are using now. You can also call up your carrier and see if they will give you a report of your past monthly usage.

From what you've said above, your most data usage will probably come from streaming music and map navigation if you use them a lot. You can easily reduce your data usage if you load all your music onto your iPhone and get an offline map like TomTom. That's what I've done since I have the lowest data plan from my carrier.
 

cvaldes

macrumors 68040
Dec 14, 2006
3,237
0
somewhere else
That's a great point about TomTom, if it saves on data it will quickly pay for itself.
This is a common misconception. On-demand GPS navi maps do not use up much cellular data. The main point of having locally stored maps is when you are traveling in areas with really poor cellular coverage.

Trust me, I've tried probably six on-demand GPS apps, and maybe three GPS apps with local map storage. The on-demand GPS apps will cache map data, so if you travel a regular route, the maps won't need to be redownloaded. The majority of your cellular data will be things like live traffic. Some on-demand GPS apps can preload maps on a WiFi connection before you start your trip.

I really don't want to use up 1.5GB of storage when 99% of my road miles are within 100 miles of my house. I don't need an entire roadmap of the United States. I did buy the CoPilot Premium USA app (local maps) when it was on sale, just in case I ever need local maps. Also, there's a variety of NavFree apps (they used to have state-specific apps for certain states).

Trust me, I used to have an AT&T GoPhone SIM with Pay As You Go data packages, so I was very conscious of where my data usage was coming from.

These days, I generally use Waze (free, on-demand maps; free live traffic). The Garmin onDemand app is pretty good, a more polished UI than Waze, but a monthly subscription is needed after the original 60-day trial period is up. I keep it on my iPhone just in case I'm in a place where Waze doesn't cut the mustard. The MotionX GPS Drive on-demand app is a back-up. They might take up about 10-20MB each, not a big deal to keep them around.

Streaming video (and to a lesser extent audio) will chew up cellular data, as will uploading photos and video to Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc.
 
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master-ceo

macrumors 65816
Sep 7, 2007
1,495
3
The SUN
7gb. Since Apple has pushed me to use the "cloud" by not letting me connect what I need to connect, unlimited data is a must.
 

Applejuiced

macrumors Westmere
Apr 16, 2008
40,672
6,531
At the iPhone hacks section.
This is a common misconception. On-demand GPS navi maps do not use up much cellular data. The main point of having locally stored maps is when you are traveling in areas with really poor cellular coverage.

Trust me, I've tried probably six on-demand GPS apps, and maybe three GPS apps with local map storage. The on-demand GPS apps will cache map data, so if you travel a regular route, the maps won't need to be redownloaded. The majority of your cellular data will be things like live traffic. Some on-demand GPS apps can preload maps on a WiFi connection before you start your trip.

I really don't want to use up 1.5GB of storage when 99% of my road miles are within 100 miles of my house. I don't need an entire roadmap of the United States. I did buy the CoPilot Premium USA app (local maps) when it was on sale, just in case I ever need local maps. Also, there's a variety of NavFree apps (they used to have state-specific apps for certain states).

Trust me, I used to have an AT&T GoPhone SIM with Pay As You Go data packages, so I was very conscious of where my data usage was coming from.

These days, I generally use Waze (free, on-demand maps; free live traffic). The Garmin onDemand app is pretty good, a more polished UI than Waze, but a monthly subscription is needed after the original 60-day trial period is up. I keep it on my iPhone just in case I'm in a place where Waze doesn't cut the mustard. The MotionX GPS Drive on-demand app is a back-up. They might take up about 10-20MB each, not a big deal to keep them around.

Streaming video (and to a lesser extent audio) will chew up cellular data, as will uploading photos and video to Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc.
If you're somewhere in the woods where you never been before and signal sucks you will have issues with on demand maps.
I use Navigon and its great.
And I download only the 2-3 states that I need on the regural on my iphone. Not a whole 1.5GB like you suggested but 300MB. And if I go on a trip somewhere else I can download that state, use it for the weekend and when I get back home delete it to make space available. There is no comparison like preloaded maps instead of pulling data as you go. And if you're in a poor reception area or 2G area then while its downloading data your calls will go straight to voicemail. I rather not deal with any of that.
 

ucfgrad93

macrumors P6
Aug 17, 2007
17,812
8,667
Colorado
If you're somewhere in the woods where you never been before and signal sucks you will have issues with on demand maps.
I use Navigon and its great.
And I download only the 2-3 states that I need on the regural on my iphone. Not a whole 1.5GB like you suggested but 300MB. And if I go on a trip somewhere else I can download that state, use it for the weekend and when I get back home delete it to make space available. There is no comparison like preloaded maps instead of pulling data as you go. And if you're in a poor reception area or 2G area then while its downloading data your calls will go straight to voicemail. I rather not deal with any of that.
Agreed. There were several areas as I traveled from Colorado to Mount Rushmore where my iPhone read NO SERVICE. However, my TomTom GPS app worked great throughout my entire trip.
 

cvaldes

macrumors 68040
Dec 14, 2006
3,237
0
somewhere else
If you're somewhere in the woods where you never been before and signal sucks you will have issues with on demand maps.
Great, thanks for pointing out the third sentence of my response.

"The main point of having locally stored maps is when you are traveling in areas with really poor cellular coverage."

However, the fact that on-demand maps don't take up a lot of cellular data remains. The difference is accessibility, not bandwidth usage.

And I download only the 2-3 states that I need on the regural on my iphone. Not a whole 1.5GB like you suggested but 300MB. And if I go on a trip somewhere else I can download that state, use it for the weekend and when I get back home delete it to make space available.
Again, covered in the third paragraph of my response. Did you even bother to read beyond the first sentence? Apparently not.

Anyhow, thanks for obliviously agreeing with the key points in my post.

There is no comparison like preloaded maps instead of pulling data as you go. And if you're in a poor reception area or 2G area then while its downloading data your calls will go straight to voicemail. I rather not deal with any of that.
Yes, that's entirely your choice. I don't talk and drive, so I really couldn't care less about calls going directly to voicemail. They all do for me.

For the umpteenth time, it doesn't change the fact that downloading on-demand maps does not use up a lot of cellular data bandwidth.

If you want to load up your iPhone with a bunch of local maps, that's fine (I pointed that out). But don't believe that you really saving much cellular data bandwidth.
 
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zbarvian

macrumors 68010
Jul 23, 2011
2,004
2
5 GB. I was shocked when AT&T throttled my "unlimited" plan after I hit 3 GB. I stream a ton of music and video, browse the web often, do email and check school stuff, so I guess I shouldn't be too surprised.
 

Applejuiced

macrumors Westmere
Apr 16, 2008
40,672
6,531
At the iPhone hacks section.
Great, thanks for pointing out the third sentence of my response.

"The main point of having locally stored maps is when you are traveling in areas with really poor cellular coverage."

However, the fact that on-demand maps don't take up a lot of cellular data remains. The difference is accessibility, not bandwidth usage.


Again, covered in the third paragraph of my response. Did you even bother to read beyond the first sentence? Apparently not.


Yes, that's entirely your choice. I don't talk and drive, so I really couldn't care less about calls going directly to voicemail. They all do for me.

For the umpteenth time, it doesn't change the fact that downloading on-demand maps does not use up a lot of cellular data bandwidth.

If you want to load up your iPhone with a bunch of local maps, that's fine (I pointed that out). But don't believe that you really saving much cellular data bandwidth.
I was just giving my opinion. Is that ok with you or I cant state anything anyone else posted in this thread or site in general?:rolleyes:
I dont care about saving data or cellular data since I have unlimited data but others with small data plans or that use up lots of data rather not use up their data plan while driving around.
And to you not receiving calls might not matter but I think plenty of people will still like to use the phone as a phone while driving and not keep missing calls.
For the umpteenth time that's just my opinion wether you like it or not. Good day:D
 

SR45

macrumors 65832
Aug 17, 2011
1,501
0
Florida
Why not use the Carriers data usage calculator to see what you think you will need. Coming here is useless since everyone is different. Verizon has a data calculator on their site. ;)
 

WesCole

macrumors 6502a
Jul 1, 2010
756
12
Texas
I don't generally use that much data. I stream Sirius radio 4-6 hours at work, but 95% I am covered by work WiFi. I have WiFi at home and at my friend's houses, too. I would say I generally use about 300MB/mo.\

I am thinking about going to the shared data plan, though, when they come out...just depends on how my education discount gets applied to that.
 

Dwalls90

macrumors 601
Feb 5, 2009
4,727
1,094
2Gb is fine for basic usage. Just don't stream Netflix/Movies or lots of music/radio.

You're going to pay out the *** if you want to stream content often.