The fact that our mobile data gets consumed more quickly than it should is due to many reasons. The main reason for this shock to our wallet is the background data functionality. Modern smartphone operating systems let system and third-party apps use mobile data in the background for enabling a more refined user experience.
According to a study conducted by Opera, 30% of our precious mobile data is used by apps running in the background. This means that the mobile data users get to use only 70% of what they have paid for.
Facebook Messenger and Gmail consume a whopping 73% of the total data used by them, while running in the background. In simple words, out of every 27 MB of data consumed by your actual usage, you lose an additional 73 MB data without your consent!
Other data hungry apps which drain your mobile internet plan even when you are not using them are Google Drive, and WhatsApp. These apps account to 50% of background data usage.
Why Do These Apps Use Background Data?
All IMs like Facebook messenger, and WhatsApp have their respective services running in the background, even when you exit them. These services fetch updates from the internet and even download media (images, audio, and videos) depending upon your preferences.
Gmail uses auto-sync to check for new emails regularly so that it can show you notifications as and when new emails arrive without much delay.
While these apps use mobile data in the background for improving user experience and for showing the latest updates to the user, mobile data is also wasted for pre-fetching ads, and news articles, even when you don’t want to go through them.
“Most apps are made to give a great user experience, not to save data. If you fetch background data through your data plan, it’s like throwing away $1 out of every $3 you spend on your mobile data plan,” says Sergey Lossev, Product Manager at Opera Software.
Many of us are also unaware about the pros and cons of the background mobile data. Many apps also don’t have special settings to disable background data when on mobile internet.
“Most people are not aware of this background data drain and may not have authorized it, nor do they know how to stop it from happening”, said Lossev while launching Smart Alerts in Opera Max.
Solution – Use Mobile Data Manager App
Mobile data management apps like Opera Max provides various functions for managing and tracking your mobile data usage.
With the launch of Smart Alerts, the data savings capability of Opera Max have reached a new height. Smart Alerts helps you identify and manage apps that use a lot of background mobile data. If you feel that some app is way too data-hungry for its worth, then you can block it from using any background mobile data.
Imagine how much more could you achieve, if you had that 30% extra mobile data.