Home internet is critical for you and your family to stay connected. It’s important to understand what internet data use is and how much your family needs to do what you love, like streaming videos, online gaming, checking social media and video chatting.
This article will shed light on data usage and how to make the best choice for your home.
Internet data is used when you connect to the internet to browse the web, play an online video game, upload or download files or stream videos and movies. Basically, it enables you to access the internet.
The data that grants you access to the internet at home enters your house through a cable from the street, such as through copper cables or fiber cables — where a modem picks up the internet signal from the internet service provider. A router then picks up the data and transmits it over Wi-Fi. Mobile data, although also wireless, is transmitted through a nearby cellular tower instead of Wi-Fi.
Usually, your internet data plan is a representation of the connection and speed to the modem. On the other hand, Wi-Fi represents an extension of such a connection. Therefore, on its own, Wi-Fi is not a specific service. Some mobile and broadband internet plans allow you access to Wi-Fi through hotspots found in numerous locations all around the country.
Internet data moves in bytes, kilobytes, megabytes and gigabytes. There are 8 bits of data in 1 byte, 1,000 bytes in a kilobyte, 1,000 kilobytes in a megabyte and 1,000 megabytes in a gigabyte.
The amount of data — either in bytes, kilobytes, megabytes or gigabytes — transferred between the internet and your device in a given period is known as internet usage. All activities that use the internet in your home contribute to your data usage. These include surfing the internet, scrolling through social media, using smart home devices, enjoying online entertainment — like streaming videos, music and playing online games — and uploading and downloading files.
The devices you use, such as a computer, smartphone or tablet, can also influence your data usage. For instance, using a computer to stream videos or browse the internet generally consumes more data than using a tablet or smartphone. This is because, when accessing websites on your computer, you’re accessing the desktop version of the website. The scripting language will take into consideration the larger screen size, which means more data. Additionally, video quality and resolution are often better when using a computer rather than other devices.
For the same reason, a tablet consumes more data than a smartphone. And even when your devices aren’t in use, some apps may use background data. This can impact your overall data usage over time.
Generally, internet data is used in two ways:
When downloading information, the data is transferred from the internet to your device. It, therefore, encompasses:
Conversely, when uploading information, the data is transferred from your device to the internet. Uploads, therefore, consist of files sent during an online conversation — including text responses to a chat — attachments sent via email and uploading pictures or videos to a social media platform. Both data uploads and downloads can affect your internet data usage.
Monitoring or keeping track of your data usage can be quite challenging. That’s why a data calculator comes in handy. A good data calculator will make it easier to track your daily, weekly or monthly data usage. As the billing cycle approaches, this can help you decide if you need to change internet plans to increase or decrease the amount of data you buy.
Various internet activities consume large amounts of data. However, overall data consumption is also dependent on the type of device used. Once you know the things that use a lot of internet data, you can make changes to minimize how you consume your data. Below are some internet activities that are capable of using a lot of data.
Although some internet-based activities consume large amounts of data, a majority of internet activities consume little or no data. Below are some activities that don’t require a lot of data.
The amount of daily, weekly and monthly data usage is dependent on what you use the internet for and how much you use it. Streaming HD videos, watching Netflix movies and downloading large files consume more data than just surfing the internet or checking social media.
A good way to know how much data you need for a home network is to review your household’s daily internet habits. You can easily use it as a yardstick to calculate the monthly internet requirements for your home.
How much internet data you consume depends largely on the specific online activities you perform and how frequently you carry out such activities.
To help you get a clearer picture, below is a rough estimate of how much data various activities consume:
With this, it becomes easier to figure out the amount of data a typical American household uses each month.
Frontier® Internet plans come with unlimited data and no data caps or overage charges. Once you subscribe to any of the internet options available from Frontier, you can use the internet as much as you want without any extra fees.
If your household requires lightning fast internet, say speed capable range as fast as 940 Mbps, consider Frontier® Fiber Internet. With symmetrical upload and download speeds and the latest fiber-optic technology, you can get the internet connection that you deserve.
No matter your internet activities, Frontier is committed to providing the right internet connection for your household. And with all of our internet plans coming with unlimited data, the last thing you’ll have to worry about is your data usage. Check plan availability in your location using our coverage maps.
Max speeds are wired. WiFi actual and average speed may vary. See performance details at frontier.com/internetdisclosures.