Are you 'overestimating data needs' with your mobile?

24 April 2012


As a consumer, there's a good chance you're signing up to pricier tariffs when it comes to your mobile phone because you have absolutely no idea how much data you actually use or need.

You may scoff, but a new survey is claiming it, so it must be true. The research, undertaken by those meddling kids at Ofcom alongside Bill Monitor, found that while 49% of all smartphone users consume less than 100MB per month, 88% have a monthly data allowance of 500MB or more.

Even taking into account the notion that data use has more than doubled over the past 18 months, use still lies around 154MB which is much lower than what consumers perceive they need. founder Stelios Koundouros said: "Virtually all smartphone users have one thing in common: they’re all paying more for mobile data than they should. It is notoriously difficult for people to estimate their real data usage, and smartphone users who don’t know how much data they are using cannot make an informed decision on which tariff is right for them. We urge people to take a good look at their consumption and make sure that they are not paying over the odds for their data."

Hands up if you can actually be bothered checking all this out to save a couple of quid.

TOPICS:   Technology   Mobile


  • Darren
  • Pedo P.
    So, in one story, you tell people to cancel their Orange contract because their call costs are going u by 1p/year. Then with the other, you tell people not to really bother when saving a few quid? Tit-heads. I think quite a few people will put their hands up, I can imagine a lot of people will be paying too much for their data usage and not even know it. This is how people run up these massive phone bills.
  • Darren
    Oh and it costs a hell of a lot more if you go over your allowed usage, so from my point of view, for a little extra it saves the hassle!
  • Mike H.
    It's, Hands up if you can actually be bothered checking all this out to save a couple of quid? Not Hands up if you can actually be bothered checking all this out to save a couple of quid. You really are shit with the '?' Dick head.
  • PJH
    Well since (at least) later versions of the Android OS come with a handy widget to let you know how much it's measuring is going out over both WiFi and 3G (and to restrict usage if it breaches user-set limits,) it's not that difficult to work out.
  • shagnasty
    I finger vixens.
  • Dai
    I found this out by actually ringing up Vodafone and asking them. I do a lot of travelling so it turned out I was using between 300 and 400mb, which rather disarmed their attempts to "upgrade" me to a tarrif with a 250mb cap. To be honest I call bullshit on the figures presented above. I'm by no means the heaviest user I know, and when stationary I generally connect to wireless. But if you have twitter, gmail, google play etc all regularly polling for updates, and you use google maps navigation a fair bit, you'd be surprised how it creeps up.
  • Dr L.
    You phoned up Vodafone and asked them about vixens. Kudos to you my old chap. Excuse me while I indulge in some well earned puppylingus.
  • FJ
    I'm not usually anywhere that doesn't have wi-fi, so 3G data is just for emergencies.
  • The B.
    I "need" about 500MB a month on my mobile, I "use" about 50MB a month on my mobile, why the disparity you might ask? Well, I'm on Vodafone which means I can't get any frigging reception to use the damned data allowance. To add insult to injury Vodafone keep texting me telling me that I really should use more data. REALLY? REALLY? You tax evading bastards, try getting your frigging network to work properly and then I'll show you what data usage is, I'll start pushing all of my tv downloads through your network.
  • Jimmy N.
    Ahhh reet like and that. I'm Jimmy Nail like and that. I got an iPhone what I use for telling everybody I use to have a song out call 'Crocodeal shus' like and that. Why aye spuggy man, av a stottie cake like and that.
  • Sicknote
    It wasn't until the second finger went in that she actually summoned assistance from the Police constable who was standing nearby but I digress; data limits, who gives a shit if they don't use all they're data allowance. I don't see websites springing up encouraging people to eat themselves to death in 'all you can eat' restaurants.
  • Sawyer
    These studies are bloody stupid. They work out that the average mobile owner uses 154mb a month, but don't consider that (a) no network offers a 154mb data allowance, and (b) the average user varies their usage, sometimes quite considerably. Let's not forget that the cost of going over, even once, can outweigh the measly saving of choosing say, 250mb instead of 500mb. Especially considering we as consumers don't always have much choice over individual components of a tariff. Want more minutes? You'll likely get given more data as well. I have a 1 gig data allowance, but given that I have a Blackberry, use about 1% of it. Does that mean I'm on the wrong tariff? When I'm paying £11 a month, not likely...
  • Brandon H.
    Use giffgaff. £10 gets me calls texts and UNLIMITED data. having said that, they have shite signal (not the best o2 coverage in my area). if you're not paying too much for a big wad of data, who cares. it's nice to know that in an emergency i can get maps and navigation and various other crap without it costing me £3 a meg.
  • Mof G.
    "Hands up if you can actually be bothered checking all this out to save a couple of quid." is an instruction not a question so why would it need a question mark Mike.
  • whatsit t.
  • Mike H.
    Muf You're asking people to put their hands up, therefore you are requesting a response to determine how many would. Some put their hands up, some don't. They are answering your 'question' with a gesture, not vocally. "Are you going to check all this out?" Some say Yes (hand up) some say no (hands down) "Lie on the floor." is a fucking instruction. So it's a question you tit head. Seriously Muf, why the fuck do you even bother? (<question mark ;) ) Yours sincerely, Mike
  • Mof G.
    Rationalise your mistake all you want Mike; you as just so obviously wrong it hurts you deep inside. It is an instruction and it’s punctuated correctly. Now get over it as do some of those funny chav “jokes”.
  • MiffMuff
    "so why would it need a question mark Mike." should read "so why would it need a question mark Mike?"
  • Mof G.
    err... yes MiffMuff. Kind of a joke you missed their eh!
  • john
    Any thoughts on the 1 plan from 3 ?

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