Kim Barloso

How long does 1GB of Internet traffic last


When you sign up for any Internet package, the question always arises: how many gigabytes should I charge? Especially when it comes to mobile Internet. There is no universal answer - it all depends on your needs and how frugal you use the internet.

Is 1GB a month enough? Yes, if you use exclusively messaging and text messages.

You should also keep in mind that the phone is constantly in the background consuming the internet. Map updates, application updates, system checks. These functions alone can "eat up" from 100mb per month. So in times of severe economic pressures remember to keep all updates and popups off the Wi-fi network.

How much Internet traffic you spend for different activities

It's worth realizing that regardless of activity, the consumption of the Internet is always different. It depends on the screen size of your device, your mobile operator and even on the internet speed. The figures given here are approximate, but they will help to guide you. If needed you can always check the traffic consumption of the applications by yourself.

Social network and messenger usage

The data consumption is directly related to the activity you are using in the social network. For example if you are browsing with tons of media (movies, images, Gifs) your data usage will be very high

If you are using social networks to watch movies and soap operas, the amount of data usage depends on the quality and duration of the video. This can be up to several GB for large quality movies.

If you are just messaging, and occasionally posting pictures, then the amount of spend will rarely exceed 100 MB per month. If you add voice and video messages to this the consumption goes up to 500 MB. Of course, this depends on the frequency of your communication, and in a month the consumption can even reach 1GB.

You can also save a lot of traffic, if you disable the automatic downloading of images and videos over the mobile Internet. In this case, 1GB of data will last even longer than one month.

Map Navigation

The average usage of Google maps is 5-10 MB per hour. When you actively use the maps - search for the places, activate the voice navigation, the consumption increases, but rarely exceeds 20MB.

Switching the map to "satellite photos" or "hybrid mode" consumes from 500KB to 1MB of data.

The Internet is not used during the GPS navigation, however it may be consumed to improve the navigation accuracy. If you would like to save costs, please go to the settings of your navigation device, and check the option "Wi-Fi-only".

If you have not downloaded maps beforehand, the consumption may increase slightly, up to 10 MB when downloading.

Calls via Telegram, WhatsApp, Discord, Skype, Zoom etc.

Messengers "consume" less traffic than the other services - less than 1MB per minute for an audio call.

Skype and Discord - from 1.5MB and up, depending on the number of users in the call.

Also Discord consumes about 45MB per hour just running in the background on your PC. The phone version is more economical. The average "cost" of a voice call is 100-200 MB per hour.

Telegram is currently considered the most "economical" messenger, followed by WhatsApp.

Video calls and broadcasts consume the same amount of traffic as watching videos. Average consumption at quality below 720p is 400 MB per hour. Longer streaming streams in high quality can consume tens of gigabytes.

Music Listening

The bandwidth consumption depends on the service you are using. If you listen to YouTube playlists, you will consume the same amount of data as if you were watching a video

Legal services such as Spotify, Yandex music, etc. consume much less data and the cache saving feature may reduce your internet consumption to a minimum. However, it is important to disable caching from mobile data.

The "budget" option is Spotify. At low quality music only 50 MB per hour, at medium quality (160kbps) 72 MB per hour. With high quality (320kbps) the consumption is already 115 MB per hour.

Yandex Music has a slightly lower consumption, 85 MB for Normal quality, 145 MB for High quality.

Viewing Youtube or other Videos

Viewing videos is the most expensive way to spend the internet. Watching an hour of HD quality video can consume up to 1GB of internet access or more depending on the resource. Higher quality video, such as 4K can consume as much as 8GB per hour.

Approximate traffic consumption per minute based on quality (YouTube):

  • - 144p - 1.90 MB
  • - 240p - 2.70 MB
  • - 360p - 4.40 MB
  • - 480p - 7.70 MB
  • - 720p - 14.50 MB
  • - 1080p - 27.61 MB

If you watch live streaming, Live videos, streams, consumption will be much higher than when watching regular videos.

We should however not forget that this depends very much on your internet speed, screen size, and many other factors.

The "traffic saving" mode and the reduction of the video quality help to save MBs of the internet.

How to know how much internet traffic you have consumed on your Android

How to know how much you have used

  1. - Access "settings";
  2. - Access the "connectivity";
  3. - Select the "data usage";

In this section you can find the internet consumption of the last month. By means of specific buttons you may or may not include in the calculation of the Wi-Fi or mobile data. The "Charging period and limit" section allows you to set the date, starting from which the spent traffic is counted. If your rates are set to zero on the 5th of each month, set the billing period to the 5th. Click on "mobile data usage" under the SIM card on which you have the internet package activated.

How to set the limit for mobile data

In order to set the limit, go to "data usage" again and click on "billing period and limit".

You will have the "overshoot warning" gadget available - you may activate it and then the moment you consume a certain amount of data you will receive a notification.

If you wish to set a limit, click on "traffic limit" and set a limit. Once this traffic has been consumed, the Mobile Internet will be cut off.

What does the data usage rate depend on

Everything depends on your device, the quality of the video you watch, the number of hours you surf the Internet.

How the traffic consumption is reduced if the end user shares the Internet

If you share the Internet, the traffic is spent exactly as much as the end user spends. If he is browsing the social networks, the amount of data spent from your phone is the same as if you were using the social networks. Neither more nor less

If the tariff includes "unlimited", will the spent gigabytes be spent for sharing the internet with another device

Depends on the package you have and on the application you are sharing the internet with. For example if you are sharing the internet from the phone to your laptop - Gigabytes will be spent regardless of the Unlimited tariff you have.

If you are sharing on another phone - speed will be significantly reduced, but Unlimited internet for example to social networks is still valid.

Some tariff plans however include such terms as "Unlimited Using 4G". In such a case, any download will spend gigabytes, no matter on PC or mobile device.

“Hello. My name is Kim. I discovered that technology, when used with a purpose, can be pretty amazing. To share the wonder of tech, I’ve written for blogs like and With over three years of freelance writing experience in the technology and entertainment niche, I can write a storm about a software app, a cool browser extension, a new mobile device and other geek-centric stuf... “

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Kim Barloso