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erysichthon
08-15-2014, 03:11 PM
Earlier this year my daughter got an iPhone 5. Her data plan is 2 GB per month. Her previous phone was a Galaxy II and she never exceeded the 2GB limit, not even once. Since getting the iPhone she has exceeded 2GB every month, and it's gotten progressively worse. The last bill says she used 6.5 GB! :eek:

I do not use an iPhone and I don't know anything about them. When the overages started, they were modest at first, so I gave her the commonplace suggestions: use wifi wherever possible, avoid streaming music and video, install an app that tracks your data use, etc. She swears she did all of this, and still the data usage skyrockets. The data-tracking app she installed is mysteriously showing far lower numbers than the carrier's bill.

The carrier (U.S. Cellular) is supposed to send a text message when you're close to your monthly limit. She says she never gets them, and we're following up on that.

I googled "iPhone 5 data usage" and found lots of people experiencing a similar scenario: they never hit their data cap until they got an iPhone 5, and now they're blowing through their limit every month and can't figure out why. I'm thinking there's more to this problem than just too much YouTube or Pandora.

So, my questions for iPhone-5-owning Dopers: What else can she do about this? What are the most likely data-hogging culprits for this device? Is there a website that provides solid information and advice about this?

A couple of other points: She's not on a shared data plan, so it's not another family member hogging the data. She's a grad student and not a flake, so please, no parenting lectures.

Mops
08-15-2014, 03:15 PM
If she were male my first thought would be: too much porn.

Does she use the personal hotspot function of her iPhone?

erysichthon
08-15-2014, 03:21 PM
Does she use the personal hotspot function of her iPhone?
Her plan does not include tethering, so I don't think it's that.

Mops
08-15-2014, 03:25 PM
Another thought: assuming the iPhone runs iOS7, in the settings app, Cellular menu, there should be per-app statistics on data usage.

erysichthon
08-15-2014, 03:43 PM
Another thought: assuming the iPhone runs iOS7, in the settings app, Cellular menu, there should be per-app statistics on data usage.
Excellent idea. I'll have her check that.

Ca3799
08-15-2014, 06:17 PM
I haven't had my iPhone 5 for a month yet and am watching data usage as well. So far, so good. But, I do turn off all the screens before I set the phone down by double tapping the home screen button and 'pushing away' all the open screens such as email, news, Facebook, etc. I think this 'turns off' the data streams to those apps until I open them again.

samclem
08-15-2014, 06:49 PM
I have a son with the same problem. He has limited wifi access during the day.

The apps that suck up all your data are facebook, safari, instagram, tumblr and Pandora(music).

Limit these to wifi only--and, poof-Bob's your uncle.

erysichthon
08-16-2014, 01:54 AM
I have a son with the same problem. He has limited wifi access during the day.

The apps that suck up all your data are facebook, safari, instagram, tumblr and Pandora(music).

Limit these to wifi only--and, poof-Bob's your uncle.
Good list of likely culprits, samclem. I think she uses most, if not all, of those.