Tuesday, November 26, 2013

[Rant] How much data do you use on the phone?

When I upgraded to the iPhone 5S, I got LTE connectivity. Until then I had been using the iPhone 4S with unlimited 3G data. Even though it was unlimited, practically it I couldn't even use up 2GB per month. My average monthly usage was around 1.3GB. It was hard work. 3G speeds were so bad with SoftBank's congested 3G data network.

IMG_0304According to the in built monitoring, I have used 12GB in the last 2 months. The usage in the first few days was high, because I had 7.5GB to use for 2 weeks. The billing date is 10th of each month. I bought the phone on the 25th of September. They gave me the full 7.5GB allowance until the 10th.

While LTE on the iPhone 5S is amazing, SoftBank put some restrictions how much data you can download using LTE. There are two main restrictions.

  • You can only download 7.5GB (7GB without tethering) per month you hit the data caps
  • On three consecutive days, the total amount downloadable before you hit the data caps 

If you hit the data caps, it would be just as if you don’t have internet on the phone. You can upload stuff at full speed though. (YouTube Capture anyone?)


If there weren't such limitations, I could have easily used up more than 20GB per month. Right now, I don't use it for anything else other than YouTube and Browsing. I download apps and podcasts when I’m connected to Wi-Fi.

YouTube is the killer though. You cannot change the streaming quality in the YouTube app when I’m connected to a mobile data connection. Quite a dumb move Google! I mean, it is fine if that the app wants to automatically select the best quality according to the speed of the data connection. But what if you want to watch the videos at 360p all the time because you don’t have an unlimited data connection? Maybe I should download the YouTube videos and sync them to the phone. Still I have to use the dreaded iTunes. That’s the crappiest software to land the Windows application eco system. But still, I don’t want to go through the restricted speeds. So I would have to give in to iTunes.

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