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Understanding the hows and whys of Internet usage on your mobile phone, then, managing it!

Pro Vidéotron




Whether because of excess data usage fees or just because your Internet app is still googling long after you’ve found your answer, excessive mobile data usage is super frustrating. 


Don’t worry, I’ve got a few tips to help keep your mobile data from disappearing!  


Background data usage


Background data usage...  uh, what’s that? Background data usage is when an app you have on your device continues to run, whether or not you’re using it right in that moment. Email syncing, weather conditions, updates, those kinds of things. It’s a good idea to limit the data that certain non-critical apps or functions can use, and instead consider switching these less important apps to function only on Wi-Fi mode.


Step One: check the mobile data usage used by the apps you’ve got installed on your device.  


For Apple devices:


Setting > Cellular > (scroll down)


Following the simple steps above, you can check each app’s data use. Then, using the slide button, you can shut off mobile background data usage access for applications that use too much of it.


I like to go to:  iTunes and App Store > Close mobile data.


That way, your apps will only update when you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network.  


Attention! Configuring like this will also prevent you from downloading applications using your mobile data.   


Also, if you don’t need to instantly save the information on your phone, I’d suggest you go to: Settings > iCloud > (scroll down) > iCloud Drive, and turn off mobile data usage.


If you do the above, then your device will save only when it’s connected to a Wi-Fi network. 


For Android devices:


Settings > Internet network or Connexion > Mobile data > Mobile data usage.


Here, you can check the amount of data each app uses, and block access to background data usage for apps that use too much of it.


In some devices, you’ll find this under the Data Saver option. 


Settings > Networks and Internet > Data Usage > Data Saver.


Data Saver prevents specific applications from sending or receiving background data usage. Apps will still have access to mobile data, but will update less often. This configuration will have an impact on the time it takes to receive emails and social media app updates.


I like to go to: Playstore > (three bars to the top left) > Settings > Automatic App Updates > Wi-Fi connection only.


Now, your apps will update only when you’re connected to a W-iFi network.  


If you don’t need to instantly save photos and images from your device, I’d suggest you also go to the Google Photo App: > (three bars to the top left) > Settings > Save and synchronize > Turn off mobile data backups.


By doing this, your photo and image backups will only occur when you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network.


Alerts and data blocking


Most Android devices will let you configure a mobile data usage alert, or an automatic block when you reach your limit.


Depending on the model you have, head to:


Settings > Network and Internet > Data usage > Billing cycle.

Settings > Connections > Mobile data > Billing cycle.


You can configure an alert and/or a block according to the amount of data that your mobile plan offers. Make sure you set these according to your billing cycle, so your mobile plan sets to zero at the same time as your device’s usage alerts begin counting.


You can still use Wi-Fi networks—even when a mobile data usage block is active.


Facebook and other social networks


Navigating on social media networks eats up a lot of Internet data, mostly because of the massive amount of images and videos that are on them.


A great way to limit data usage for these applications is to deactivate the automatic playback of videos.




Open the Facebook app > (three bars to the top right) > Settings and Privacy > Settings > Media and contact > Automatic playback > Wi-Fi only, or deactivate.


This configuration will help you save data usage, because you’ll be able to select the videos you want to see.

Similar configurations are available for other social media networks and platforms.  


Stream your music offline


Many music apps (like Spotify, Apple Music and Google PlayMusic) will let you download music onto your device using a Wi-Fi network, which means you can avoid data usage when you’re listening to your tunes.  


Use this option when you’re listening to your favourite songs on repeat—not only will you reduce your Internet use, you’ll also maximize your battery life! This option is only available with a subscription to the Premium application.


Monitoring Internet usage


Lastly, it’s important to keep an eye on your mobile data usage, even after applying all the above tips and tricks.  

Videotron’s User Centre+ app allows you to check your data usage so you can better manage it, and it’s is available for download in Google Play or the App Store.


Expect a 4-hour delay for the app to update.