Could you use a ton of data?

100GB data deals are now a thing. But would you ever use that much?
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Could you use a ton of data?

Do you really need 100GB data?

Do you remember your first mobile data package? If you’ve been a mobile phone owner for a few years, cast your mind back. The chances are, it’ll have been in megabytes rather than gigabytes. If that sounds scarcely believable to you, here’s what an expert was saying about the worrying rise in data usage in 2013: “Data use is on the increase. We've observed that the longer you have a smartphone the more data you consume. Over the last 12 months average data usage has increased from 200MB to 280MB."

Things are very different today, of course. You don’t need to search too far to find massive 100GB data deals being offered – on SIM Only deals, or attached to pay monthly plans with the latest premium handsets.

That’s an awful lot of data, and it does sound tempting, right? But think about it for a second. If you’re shelling out your hard-earned cash for 100GB data a month, would you ever actually use it? Or anywhere close? Let’s take a closer look at the numbers involved.

Want to use lots of data? Get streaming

If you’re a Facebook fan and want to make a dent in 100GB of data, then you’ll need to start getting busy. Over the course of a month, you’ll have to upload 150,000 photos to use up your data allowance. So, if you feel guilty about uploading more than twenty snaps of a night out, you’ll need to find another way of enjoying your data…

If you’re a music lover, 100GB of monthly data will let you stream six weeks of high quality Spotify tunes. We’ve done the maths, and we’ve worked out that it’s going to be tough for anyone to listen to six weeks’ worth of music in a month. So, moving on then…

You could always use 100GB of monthly data by sending 150,000,000 Whatsapp messages. No? Okay, let’s move on again...

Let’s talk movies. Because intense and prolonged streaming on the likes of Netflix is the only way you’re going to make inroads into a ton of data. If you watch over 33 hours of HD quality Netflix in a month, congratulations – you’ll have reached that magic 100GB data mark.

A quick word about tethering

It’s probably worth mentioning tethering here, because this is an activity that has the potential to burn through serious amounts of mobile data.

Tethering is when you hook up a laptop (or other mobile device) to your smartphone, and then use your mobile network connection to connect to the internet. The reason that this uses so much data is pretty simple - doing stuff on a laptop uses more data than doing the same thing on a phone.

Here’s the big drawback on tethering though – it’s not allowed on a lot of mobile packages. And when it is, the amount is often capped. It pays to read the small print.

Our verdict

100GB is a serious amount of data, and it doesn’t come cheap. So we suggest you think long and hard before you go for a plan with such a hefty amount. According to recent reports, the average amount of mobile data being used in the UK each month is a mere 2.5GB.

Working out how much data you need is probably the hardest part of getting a new phone. That’s why a Data Usage Calculator is one of the main parts of our Pin Point system in store. It quickly calculates your perfect data package and helps you find the right plan. So, if you are looking for a new phone, head into a Carphone Warehouse store for a chat. Then when you find out your average data usage, you can choose a suitable data package – rather than one that’s way too big.

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

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