Mobile data usage has been in global debt over the years, especially as more and more smart mobile devices are developed and released into the market. Nigeria however is not left out as telecommunication companies are promoting a lot of data packages in the market.
We cannot deny the fact that a lot more Nigerians than ever before now own and use smartphones. Some use these devices for work, some to enhance their profile or perceived value, others for PR, and so on. Regardless of usage pattern, one truth is that you can not maximise the use of your smartphone without a data plan.
The question is, what do you do with your smartphone? For me, email is primary. For others, it is their mobile office (I know of a guy that runs his bulk SMS business on his Blackberry device). So, determining your usage should help you determine the data plan that you should pay for.
I use a Nokia N8. Till recently, I used to spend N1,000 on mobile internet service every month. However, I noticed that I do most of my browsing on my laptop and I only use my phone to receive and reply my mails. After this analysis of my data usage I was determined to know the amount of data I use in a month on my smartphone.
I went online and downloaded Data Quota, an application that helps you determine the amount of data you use in a month.
You can download Data Quota here. Data Quota supports both Symbian 5th and 3rd edition.
If you have a pre-determined quota from your operator of how much packet data you can use in a month, it’s a pain to first find the Logs application, open the packet data counter, then try and work out how much data you have left from the amount used so far.
Data Quota shows two simple bars: one showing how much of the data for this month you have used; and one showing how much of the month has elapsed. This lets you tell at a glance if you’ve been using data up too fast or two slow, so you can be more frugal or let rip! It is important to clear your packet data counter on your phone before use so you can have accurate readings.
After installing and using data quota for a month I was able to determine that I use only 40MB out of the 150MB that I pay for every month.
I notice that I have been receiving 15MB every week from Etisalat for free, So I switched my MTN line to another phone (to receive calls) and use my Etisalat line for voice calls and data on my smartphone and I have not been paying for data on my smartphone since then.
Do you know of other ways to reduce expenses on mobile data usage?
Please share your ideas.