The real cost of 4G LTE- file size data

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Laserawesome, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. Laserawesome macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #1
    A lot of people, including myself, had a hard time deciding whether to preorder a WiFi only iPad or a 4G iPad. In the end I felt that the 4G was not right for me because I mainly use the iPad at home and can tether it to my unlimited data phone if the need arises.

    For those still on the fence, I found an article from gizmodo that lays out the true cost of having 4G. I thought I'd pass it along:

    :http://gizmodo.com/5891064/how-much-more-the-ipads-superfast-4g-lte-data-will-cost-you-updated

    Here is some data from the article about file sizes:

    AT&T File-Size Estimates

    • 1 App/Game (non-Retina): 4MB
    • 1 App/Game (Retina): 8MB
    • 1 hour of YouTube streaming: 120MB
    • 1 hour of Netflix streaming: 306MB

    They also mention that pictures and apps are much larger because of the HD screen. This could make using the 4G iPad a lot more costly than you expected.
     
  2. Ryan1524 macrumors 68000

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #2
    It depends on the content. If you are consciously streaming HD videos, then yes. But if you're talking about images on sites, those tend to be downloaded at its preset resolution whether you are using an iPhone, iPad (retina or not). In which case, we're simply wasting data downloading something we can't truly appreciate.

    What the retina display allows you to do is see those images/videos for what they truly are, but the data cost is the same. Apps can be larger, but if most of its contents are locally generated, the app size itself won't increase much.
     
  3. Laserawesome thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #3
    Yes, reading websites doesn't change. The main concern would be the image data in HD optimized apps. If I understand correctly (I'm not a dev), the images have to be doubled in size to account for the double amount of pixels in the new screen.
     
  4. Ryan1524 macrumors 68000

    Ryan1524

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2003
    Location:
    Canada GTA
    #4
    Like I said, it depends on the apps. If it's something like News channels, Flipboard, Sketchbook, Yelp, etc that generates a lot of text/content on its own, the cost for those high-res UI elements won't be severe. And you can always try and download apps on wifi.

    Consider the difference between a vector-drawn map apps vs Google Maps.

    Google maps will eat up a LOT of data since it downloads those map tiles as images, while a vector drawn map app will download the same set of instructions, but the maps will be drawn locally at double the res.
     
  5. aypues macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2012
    Location:
    San Diego

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