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Posted Feb 17, 2011
8:54:04 AM
Demand control over your IPhone data usage

Call ATT and demand that they provide an a means for the account holder to know which programs are using cellular data and further allow us to limit which programs we allow the phone to access cellular data.  This has to be separate from WI-FI usage.

 

They will tell you that this is a software issue and that you need to contact Apple.  WRONG!

 

It is true that Apple eventually would have to write some software to allow this to work.  The point is that Apple will never do this unless ATT explicitly asks them to as this will cost ATT revenue since users can then actually have control over what data is used.  ATT has to allow this to happen.

 

Here is what happened when I called ATT because my daughters IPhone 4 was using about 100MB of data every week even though I know that she almost never used the web browser and was not streaming video or anything like that.

 

When you call ATT "Customer Service" and ask them how you can know what programs are using up all the data in your data plan, the first thing they will tell you is you can upgrade your data plan.

 

They will also tell you there is NO WAY to know what programs are actually accessing the internet using this data. 

 

Continuing their "Uncustomer Service" I pressed them that they really needed to help me figure out why my daughters new phone was using over 200MB in just two weeks.

 

I said I either needed a way to manage the data or turn it off.  I was again told NO WAY TO DO THIS.

 

I kept pressing him that I need help and that the other answers were not helping.

 

Finally I started to break through their script.

First he tried to tell me that the application would warn me if it access the internet.  WRONG.

The next suggestions were to read the terms and conditions of each application to see if it accesses data.  SORRY, NOT GOING THERE.

 

After about 45 minutes on the phone he finally told me about how to turn off data usage on the IPhone OS4.  Basically if you turn off WI-FI and Cellular Data then try and launch all your applications.  If they error then you know you are trying to access the internet.  See my post about how to know what programs are using all that data for details on how to do this.

 

Everyone needs to speak up and complain to ATT about this.  Only then will we have a chance to get this under OUR control.

Call ATT and demand that they provide an a means for the account holder to know which programs are using cellular data and further allow us to limit which programs we allow the phone to access cellular data.  This has to be separate from WI-FI usage.

 

They will tell you that this is a software issue and that you need to contact Apple.  WRONG!

 

It is true that Apple eventually would have to write some software to allow this to work.  The point is that Apple will never do this unless ATT explicitly asks them to as this will cost ATT revenue since users can then actually have control over what data is used.  ATT has to allow this to happen.

 

Here is what happened when I called ATT because my daughters IPhone 4 was using about 100MB of data every week even though I know that she almost never used the web browser and was not streaming video or anything like that.

 

When you call ATT "Customer Service" and ask them how you can know what programs are using up all the data in your data plan, the first thing they will tell you is you can upgrade your data plan.

 

They will also tell you there is NO WAY to know what programs are actually accessing the internet using this data. 

 

Continuing their "Uncustomer Service" I pressed them that they really needed to help me figure out why my daughters new phone was using over 200MB in just two weeks.

 

I said I either needed a way to manage the data or turn it off.  I was again told NO WAY TO DO THIS.

 

I kept pressing him that I need help and that the other answers were not helping.

 

Finally I started to break through their script.

First he tried to tell me that the application would warn me if it access the internet.  WRONG.

The next suggestions were to read the terms and conditions of each application to see if it accesses data.  SORRY, NOT GOING THERE.

 

After about 45 minutes on the phone he finally told me about how to turn off data usage on the IPhone OS4.  Basically if you turn off WI-FI and Cellular Data then try and launch all your applications.  If they error then you know you are trying to access the internet.  See my post about how to know what programs are using all that data for details on how to do this.

 

Everyone needs to speak up and complain to ATT about this.  Only then will we have a chance to get this under OUR control.

Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 8, 2011 10:09:34 AM
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ACE - Professor

If the customer removes their sim card, and is still billed, then clearly the issue is with the company providing service via the sim card.

 

If the customer removed the sim card, but stuck it back in every now and then to make a call, then sure, whatever process that was generating data usage before would continue to do so, unless the customer turned off cellular data. Turning off cellular data is far more reliable, since it remains off if one removes and reinserts a sim "only for a moment" or "just for a call".

 

So, the customer is yelling at some random person, which may make the customer happy, but it will not solve his problem in the least.

 

If the customer had an HTC android phone, removed the sim card, and was still billed, they sure would not call up someone at HTC in Korea.

 

Hearing half the story 2nd hand, I would be inclined to discount it. Hearing a 2nd hand story third hand, I would definitely discount it. But that's just me.

If the customer removes their sim card, and is still billed, then clearly the issue is with the company providing service via the sim card.

 

If the customer removed the sim card, but stuck it back in every now and then to make a call, then sure, whatever process that was generating data usage before would continue to do so, unless the customer turned off cellular data. Turning off cellular data is far more reliable, since it remains off if one removes and reinserts a sim "only for a moment" or "just for a call".

 

So, the customer is yelling at some random person, which may make the customer happy, but it will not solve his problem in the least.

 

If the customer had an HTC android phone, removed the sim card, and was still billed, they sure would not call up someone at HTC in Korea.

 

Hearing half the story 2nd hand, I would be inclined to discount it. Hearing a 2nd hand story third hand, I would definitely discount it. But that's just me.

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 8, 2011 10:36:58 AM
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Edited by Facci on Apr 8, 2011 at 10:45:39 AM
I have had the 3G, 3GS and now the 4 and my data use is never consistent. The data varies from month to month but on the average stays under 400-500 MB. I can't believe that some gets a new iPhone and they don't "play" with and their data use doesn't increase for the 1st month.

My wife and I both have iPhone 4's and have never gone over 1GB since getting them on launch day. It's rare that we even go over 500MB.

As for the OP, my wife and I have many of the sane apps and don't have a problem with data. Maybe it's the phone itself?

I don't know how old the daughter is but find it hard to believe she is only using those apps and using over 100MB a week. At least one of my children is too devious and could never give him an iPhone because he would kill the data plan, even the 2GB plan and then would figure out how to cover up what he was doing on the phone. That's why he has a pay as you go phone from t-mobile because it's the only plan he can't cost me money on.
I have had the 3G, 3GS and now the 4 and my data use is never consistent. The data varies from month to month but on the average stays under 400-500 MB. I can't believe that some gets a new iPhone and they don't "play" with and their data use doesn't increase for the 1st month.

My wife and I both have iPhone 4's and have never gone over 1GB since getting them on launch day. It's rare that we even go over 500MB.

As for the OP, my wife and I have many of the sane apps and don't have a problem with data. Maybe it's the phone itself?

I don't know how old the daughter is but find it hard to believe she is only using those apps and using over 100MB a week. At least one of my children is too devious and could never give him an iPhone because he would kill the data plan, even the 2GB plan and then would figure out how to cover up what he was doing on the phone. That's why he has a pay as you go phone from t-mobile because it's the only plan he can't cost me money on.

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 8, 2011 10:54:27 PM
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I just read about half of the entries on this topic; and you detail all the tricks that I also learned in trying to ID the data hogs on my iPhone 3GS... except one trick.  I didn't see any suggestions to download one or more of the free data-monitoring apps available.  DataMan and myAT&T are both good, and they agree with each other fairly well.  DataMan has a LOT more refinements for nailing down the offending apps, since it gives a minute by minute tally of data use.  All you have to do is open DataMan during or after you use a feature or application, and you'll see how much data was consumed, and whether it went against your WiFi or your AT&T allowance.  iPhone defaults to WiFi if you're enabled and signed on to an open WiFi network... very handy.

 

But the MAIN THING that was putting me over the top on my data cap was the fact that I had a BUNCH of apps running in the background and didn't know it.  I don't recall anything in the online operators manual that tells how to SHUT OFF an app:  double tap the home button, touch and hold any of the apps that are still running, tap the little red X next to the apps you don't need, and voila! they're OFF.

 

Of course there are a bunch of other data users... if you're not using these, turn off: Fetch, Push, Notifications, Location Service, BlueTooth, and Cellular Data if you're on WiFi; restrict Bing, iTunes, app loading/deleting.  

I just read about half of the entries on this topic; and you detail all the tricks that I also learned in trying to ID the data hogs on my iPhone 3GS... except one trick.  I didn't see any suggestions to download one or more of the free data-monitoring apps available.  DataMan and myAT&T are both good, and they agree with each other fairly well.  DataMan has a LOT more refinements for nailing down the offending apps, since it gives a minute by minute tally of data use.  All you have to do is open DataMan during or after you use a feature or application, and you'll see how much data was consumed, and whether it went against your WiFi or your AT&T allowance.  iPhone defaults to WiFi if you're enabled and signed on to an open WiFi network... very handy.

 

But the MAIN THING that was putting me over the top on my data cap was the fact that I had a BUNCH of apps running in the background and didn't know it.  I don't recall anything in the online operators manual that tells how to SHUT OFF an app:  double tap the home button, touch and hold any of the apps that are still running, tap the little red X next to the apps you don't need, and voila! they're OFF.

 

Of course there are a bunch of other data users... if you're not using these, turn off: Fetch, Push, Notifications, Location Service, BlueTooth, and Cellular Data if you're on WiFi; restrict Bing, iTunes, app loading/deleting.  

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 13, 2011 7:26:01 AM
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On Sunday the 10th at 9 30 Pm I had a huge data activity on my acct. It was 210 MB, and I am on 200mb plan.  Around 2 AM on the 12th I received a text message from ATT that I went over my data allowed and charge additional 15$ for another 200mb. I though ATT would text me if I reach 50%, 80% and 100%, which I never did receive. I even have DataMan app on my Iphone, it shows only 36MB used for this billing cycle.

 

I work at 4 in the morning, so by 8 30-9 PM I am in bed already and I do have wifi at home too.

 

Yesterday I called ATT, I explained to her about my case, got no answer for me. She said " IF I let my iphone battery life under 50% it automatically switch to 3G and it disabled wifi". I was like WFT, first time hearing that.

 

I really don't want to agrue with her, then she switch me to the 2gig plan.

 

On Sunday the 10th at 9 30 Pm I had a huge data activity on my acct. It was 210 MB, and I am on 200mb plan.  Around 2 AM on the 12th I received a text message from ATT that I went over my data allowed and charge additional 15$ for another 200mb. I though ATT would text me if I reach 50%, 80% and 100%, which I never did receive. I even have DataMan app on my Iphone, it shows only 36MB used for this billing cycle.

 

I work at 4 in the morning, so by 8 30-9 PM I am in bed already and I do have wifi at home too.

 

Yesterday I called ATT, I explained to her about my case, got no answer for me. She said " IF I let my iphone battery life under 50% it automatically switch to 3G and it disabled wifi". I was like WFT, first time hearing that.

 

I really don't want to agrue with her, then she switch me to the 2gig plan.

 

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 13, 2011 8:02:06 AM
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ACE - Professor

We've covered the wifi/3g behavior many times here. If you have wifi on, and your phone goes to sleep, and its not plugged in, wifi turns off after about 15 minutes.

 

If your phone is plugged into a power source, it will keep wifi active even if asleep.

 

So, plug your phone in at night.

 

Also, as we keep reminding folks, the data reporting time can vary up to 72 hours from actual use. It is not always a real-time report. So large reports in the middle of the night usually correspond to many small transactions batched up over the day, and reported overnight.

 

We've covered the wifi/3g behavior many times here. If you have wifi on, and your phone goes to sleep, and its not plugged in, wifi turns off after about 15 minutes.

 

If your phone is plugged into a power source, it will keep wifi active even if asleep.

 

So, plug your phone in at night.

 

Also, as we keep reminding folks, the data reporting time can vary up to 72 hours from actual use. It is not always a real-time report. So large reports in the middle of the night usually correspond to many small transactions batched up over the day, and reported overnight.

 

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 13, 2011 9:57:48 AM
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TinhMaiMongCho

I had such a data spike also, but I did receive warnings at ~90% from both DataMan and myAT&T.  So I shut it off temporarily until I could try to figure out the problem.  The problem as I see it, was that without knowing it, I had multiple apps in the background of my 3GS, including the Navionics nautical navigation app & Location Service to get me through heavy fog while crossing the Straits of Juan de Fuca.

 

I have seen comments that "apps in the background aren't actually running and using data."  But I'm not so sure about that.  I'm open to expert advice on that question.

 

When I talked to a helpful AT&T Customer Service rep about the data spike, she advised that I check out some of those things I mentioned above in #33.  Then I asked her how to shut off an app; and that's when I learned that a dozen or so apps were still "on" in the background, because I thought that just single-clicking the Home button would turn the apps off... maybe not. 

 

While I am not recommending such austerity, I now TURN OFF apps when not in use and employ many of the restrictions I mentioned above in #33.  Since then, my data use on a 200mb plan has averaged less than 50mb/mo.  But to be on the safe side, I may go to the 2gb plan for the next boating or road trip.

 

 

TinhMaiMongCho

I had such a data spike also, but I did receive warnings at ~90% from both DataMan and myAT&T.  So I shut it off temporarily until I could try to figure out the problem.  The problem as I see it, was that without knowing it, I had multiple apps in the background of my 3GS, including the Navionics nautical navigation app & Location Service to get me through heavy fog while crossing the Straits of Juan de Fuca.

 

I have seen comments that "apps in the background aren't actually running and using data."  But I'm not so sure about that.  I'm open to expert advice on that question.

 

When I talked to a helpful AT&T Customer Service rep about the data spike, she advised that I check out some of those things I mentioned above in #33.  Then I asked her how to shut off an app; and that's when I learned that a dozen or so apps were still "on" in the background, because I thought that just single-clicking the Home button would turn the apps off... maybe not. 

 

While I am not recommending such austerity, I now TURN OFF apps when not in use and employ many of the restrictions I mentioned above in #33.  Since then, my data use on a 200mb plan has averaged less than 50mb/mo.  But to be on the safe side, I may go to the 2gb plan for the next boating or road trip.

 

 

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 13, 2011 6:19:20 PM
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Everyone seems to have a theory on what is happening here so here is mine.  I have 4 iPhones on my plan; 2 iPhone 4's, 1 3GS and 1 3G.  Of these phones, all but my iPhone 4 have huge amounts of data posted between 11:59PM and 2:15AM each day.  The highest single post was 238241KB at 12:35AM.  Other single posts between 65MB and 98MB (Thank god that phone, my wifes, is on the old unlimited plan). 

 

So my theroy has something to do with the location services.  I noticed my wifes phone had just about every app listed under the location services turned on.  I turned all the apps to off except for the Camera and Maps.  For 3 days since this change, the highest single data posting was for 653KB.  A big difference from 238241KB in one day!! 

 

Give this a try and see if it helps anyone else and then post back.

 

 

Everyone seems to have a theory on what is happening here so here is mine.  I have 4 iPhones on my plan; 2 iPhone 4's, 1 3GS and 1 3G.  Of these phones, all but my iPhone 4 have huge amounts of data posted between 11:59PM and 2:15AM each day.  The highest single post was 238241KB at 12:35AM.  Other single posts between 65MB and 98MB (Thank god that phone, my wifes, is on the old unlimited plan). 

 

So my theroy has something to do with the location services.  I noticed my wifes phone had just about every app listed under the location services turned on.  I turned all the apps to off except for the Camera and Maps.  For 3 days since this change, the highest single data posting was for 653KB.  A big difference from 238241KB in one day!! 

 

Give this a try and see if it helps anyone else and then post back.

 

 

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 13, 2011 11:53:19 PM
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horsepower

 

Sounds like you nailed it.  That's also been my experience with Location Service and apps that use it. 

 

Today I checked the bus schedule, using Location Service and my handy "OneBusAway" app.  When finished, I turned off the app and Location Service, and checked data usage on my DataMan app. 

In just the couple minutes it took to check the bus schedule, it racked up 1.5 mb. 

 

So leaving Location Service and something like Google Maps on all day could really chalk up some mb's.

 

When I "turn off" an app, I double press Home, touch & hold any one of the open apps until red dots appear, then tap the red dots on the apps I'm not using.  This procedure doesn't appear in iPhone User Manual.

horsepower

 

Sounds like you nailed it.  That's also been my experience with Location Service and apps that use it. 

 

Today I checked the bus schedule, using Location Service and my handy "OneBusAway" app.  When finished, I turned off the app and Location Service, and checked data usage on my DataMan app. 

In just the couple minutes it took to check the bus schedule, it racked up 1.5 mb. 

 

So leaving Location Service and something like Google Maps on all day could really chalk up some mb's.

 

When I "turn off" an app, I double press Home, touch & hold any one of the open apps until red dots appear, then tap the red dots on the apps I'm not using.  This procedure doesn't appear in iPhone User Manual.

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 14, 2011 4:29:12 AM
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Professor

 


horatio wrote:

 

When I "turn off" an app, I double press Home, touch & hold any one of the open apps until red dots appear, then tap the red dots on the apps I'm not using.  This procedure doesn't appear in iPhone User Manual.


 

It doesn't appear in the manual, because it is unnecessary.  Only some apps that use specific API's can continue to run in the background, otherwise, tapping the home button to exit the app puts it into suspend mode.

 

If the app is written to allow multi-tasking and the app is continueing to use data when running in the background, then that is an issue that needs to be addressed with the app developer.  Neither AT&T or Apple have anything to do with this.

 

I find it amazing, almost a year after multi-tasking was introduced and people are still clueless about how it really works and what really happens when they exit an app.  But then, I also find it amazing that some people (generalization here) remember not only how, but to actually breathe.

 


horatio wrote:

 

When I "turn off" an app, I double press Home, touch & hold any one of the open apps until red dots appear, then tap the red dots on the apps I'm not using.  This procedure doesn't appear in iPhone User Manual.


 

It doesn't appear in the manual, because it is unnecessary.  Only some apps that use specific API's can continue to run in the background, otherwise, tapping the home button to exit the app puts it into suspend mode.

 

If the app is written to allow multi-tasking and the app is continueing to use data when running in the background, then that is an issue that needs to be addressed with the app developer.  Neither AT&T or Apple have anything to do with this.

 

I find it amazing, almost a year after multi-tasking was introduced and people are still clueless about how it really works and what really happens when they exit an app.  But then, I also find it amazing that some people (generalization here) remember not only how, but to actually breathe.

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Apr 14, 2011 12:59:11 PM
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satchev wrote:

It doesn't appear in the manual, because it is unnecessary.  Only some apps that use specific API's can continue to run in the background, otherwise, tapping the home button to exit the app puts it into suspend mode.

 

If the app is written to allow multi-tasking and the app is continueing to use data when running in the background, then that is an issue that needs to be addressed with the app developer.  Neither AT&T or Apple have anything to do with this.

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

TNX for that clear explanation.   I've always assumed it was an app-developer issue, and not AT&T or Apple.  I'll lighten up on the my "data-reduction" efforts. 

satchev wrote:

It doesn't appear in the manual, because it is unnecessary.  Only some apps that use specific API's can continue to run in the background, otherwise, tapping the home button to exit the app puts it into suspend mode.

 

If the app is written to allow multi-tasking and the app is continueing to use data when running in the background, then that is an issue that needs to be addressed with the app developer.  Neither AT&T or Apple have anything to do with this.

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

TNX for that clear explanation.   I've always assumed it was an app-developer issue, and not AT&T or Apple.  I'll lighten up on the my "data-reduction" efforts. 

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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Jun 20, 2011 5:50:40 AM
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Edited by rkane17 on Jun 20, 2011 at 5:52:37 AM

this is to a reply by pk2011 dated 02-23-2011

 

Your reply is so asinine!!! If my car was still using gas when it is shut off then YES!!! I wouldn't just be complaining to my manufacturer I'd be suing them!

You seem to forget that we can choose when to drive the car and not...unlike the iPhone & At&T service. Going by your statement everyone should let their cars run in the driveway all day because "well it's a car and they use gas"

this is to a reply by pk2011 dated 02-23-2011

 

Your reply is so asinine!!! If my car was still using gas when it is shut off then YES!!! I wouldn't just be complaining to my manufacturer I'd be suing them!

You seem to forget that we can choose when to drive the car and not...unlike the iPhone & At&T service. Going by your statement everyone should let their cars run in the driveway all day because "well it's a car and they use gas"

Re: Demand control over your IPhone data usage

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