Going over a data limit on AT&T isn’t cheap, and with the new Mobile Share family data plans and the iPhone 5′s 4G LTE data connection it’s easier than ever to blow past data limits.
In order to avoid extra charges for data, it’s important to check data used on the iPhone throughout the month and to sign up for data usage alerts.
Thanks to the faster 4G LTE connection and larger screen on the iPhone 5, it’s more tempting to watch Monday Night Football on Watch ESPN app or to use the Netflix app to watch movies in widescreen. Between streaming videos, downloading apps, making FaceTime calls over LTE and uploading photos to Facebook, it’s easy to blow through a monthly data limit in no time.
Add on family members using the same bucket of data and tracking data use gets complicated, but AT&T offers an app to track data usage on the iPhone and other devices.
How to Check Data Use on the AT&T iPhone
It’s best to go straight to AT&T when checking how much data the iPhone used so far this billing period. The myAT&T app offers access to the latest data use information as well as other billing information and usage details.
Download the app and look for the myAT&T icon.
Select the myAT&T app from your homescreen to open it.
Once the app is open enter your account information.
After logging in, select usage.
The next screen shows data usage on the iPhone for the current billing cycle.
It is wise to check this fairly regularly if overages are usually a concern at the end of the month. Users also receive data use alerts that go to the main number on the AT&T Mobile Share plan. These alerts arrive at 65% and 90% use, but may not arrive during an active download, such as a movie, so be sure to keep an eye on data usage.
Users can upgrade to a higher limit data plan before the end fo the month to avoid overage charges. Going over the data limit results in $15 for 1GB of data. Upgrading to a higher level of data for the rest of the month may be a better deal.
Another place to watch is using the iPhone as a personal hotspot. This is a great way to connect the iPad or a laptop to the Internet, but it can burn through data quickly.
Users can limit mobile data use can connect to WiFi when at home or work, and avoid downloading large files over 3G, 4G and 4G LTE. For those with trouble covering an entire home in WiFi, check out the NetGear WiFi Booster, a $40 accessory that extends the range of a home WiFi network to cover more rooms or a yard.