When we are away on using wifi the amount of data used is inconsequential. But if you are using a mobile data card you will have probably purchased a set allowance to be consumed over a set period of days or months.

How to keep your data usage to a minimum?

  1. Turn off the automatic Windows update. Windows can check and download updates in the background without you knowing. See here for details on how to turn this off: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows/turn-automatic-updating-on-off#turn-automatic-updating-on-off=windows-7
    For a Mac look here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201541
  2. Turn your Internet Security or virus checker updates off. Protecting your computer is important so do not switch the software off, just to updates and then update the software when you are on wifi.
  3. Backup software will often detect file changes and try to copy them to the backup service. Turn this off and it will reduce your data usage but remember to switch back on when on wifi.
  4. If you use an email client such as Outlook, Windows Mail, Mac Mail, etc, they can use lots of data downloading your email and attachments. That photo of Aunt Mary’s cat wearing a knitted jumper just cost you data! Switch to using web mail and it can save you data.
  5. Use a web browser that compresses the data making it smaller. This is mainly for mobile phones and tablets but can work for desktops as well. See here for more details: http://www.howtogeek.com/181567/how-to-reduce-data-usage-when-browsing-the-web-on-a-smartphone/