Chewing through mobile data? 6 ways to satisfy (or subdue) your appetite
Don't pay through your nose just because you're data-hungry. Use our hacks for cutting costs without sacrificing phone time.
If you find yourself going over your data limit every month, don't fret. There are ways to avoid the dreaded warning message while still keeping your costs in check.
(No, we're not going to give you any dud tips like taking phone breaks or ditching social media.)
There's no judgement here. We want you to be able to use your phone how you want to – just without spending a fortune on data. Here's how to do it:
Pretty much the easiest way to make sure you don't go over your data plan is to choose a plan that's unlimited. Yep, they really do exist (there just aren't many out there).
felix Mobile is among the few providers offering an unlimited data phone plan without a lock-in contract. For $35 a month, you can get unlimited calls, texts and data at speeds of up to 20Mbps within Australia.
Although speeds are capped, 20Mbps can easily accomodate the average phone user's day-to-day habits. We actually tested this recently (you can read about it here) and 20Mbps worked perfectly across everything from social media use and web browsing, through to online gaming and HD streaming.
It was a touch slower when downloading large files, but it wasn't a major issue – although you may want to wait until you have access to Wi-Fi in some cases. Which brings us nicely onto our next point.
Sign up to felix with our exclusive offer before 31/03/22 and get 50% off your first 3 months ($17.50/mth). Use code FINDER50 to claim. Then $35/mth on a no lock-in contract. New customers only. T&C apply.*
Use Wi-Fi when possible
Make it a habit to switch to Wi-Fi whenever it's available, including public spaces. There used to be a lot of mistrust around using public Wi-Fi, but it's safer than many people realise.
Don't be shy about asking friends or family for their Wi-Fi passwords either. Just don't get offended if they say no. At the end of the day, every extra connection is a security risk.
Remember this when handing out your own Wi-Fi password too. You might want to create a guest password which provides an extra layer of security.
Download a data-usage app
Seeing how much data you're using at any given time is a great way to boost awareness of your own habits. It can also give you the information you need to choose a data plan properly.
Picking a plan that actually meets your needs will remove the frustration of frequent warning messages, unexpected extra costs or Internet cut-offs.
Data usage apps can also serve as encouragement to connect to your work's Wi-Fi network, or it could be the reminder you need to check which apps you have open in the background.
Cancel out of apps
Do you always remember to close apps properly once you're done using them? If so, congratulations – I'd like to bet you're among the minority.
Most of us leave apps running in the background which can gradually drain precious data. Get into the habit of closing them properly and you might give yourself a few extra GB to play with.
Switch off autoplay
Wherever you can, switch off autoplay within your video, streaming and social media apps. You can usually turn it off within the setting options.
Instead of your phone immediately using extra data to load every video you scroll past, it'll only kick in once you hit play. Savings might be small, but they all add up over time.
Ask for a refund
If you still get stung with an unexpected bill at the end of the month, try asking for a refund. It sounds cheeky, but I did this recently and it actually worked.
I was hit with $20 extra on a recent phone bill – $10 per MB – for going over my data allowance. I might have accepted the first charge without arguing, but the second came the day before my plan renewal. Let me tell you, I was irked. It felt so unfair.
I contacted my provider and they reversed both charges. I'm not saying this is going to happen all of the time, but what's the harm in trying?
Satisfy your data hunger with felix Mobile
Whether you've tried the tips above or simply don't want to, you can still avoid running over your data allowance by switching to an unlimited plan. Here's what felix Mobile's looks like: