Where has my data gone & tips to lower your usage?

Where-has-my-data-gone-&-tips to lower your usage?

The recent wave of disappearing airtime and data and the ongoing #DataMustFall war, has left consumers very anxious and frustrated with their service providers - with many opting to switch in an effort to curb their mobile expenditure.

Although the actual long-term effectiveness of switching may be questionable, consumers are already frustrated with the high cost of living and will do just about anything to try and save money where they can. It may seem like a very long way to go before data actually falls, but in the meantime, here are a few tips that may help improve how long your airtime and data lasts.

Disappearing data

Common culprits of data seemingly disappearing even when your mobile data is off are often as a result of apps that may be running in the background, check the following to ensure you don’t fall victim:
  • Ensure that your mobile is set to restrict background data for the apps on your phone 
  • Check that your wifi connection will not connect to your mobile data automatically when the signal is poor. Auto-network switch and Wi-fi assist should be disabled in your settings
  • Make sure you understand and are connected to the correct network, i.e. LTE may cost you extra data
There are also “little” things you can do to try and keep your data usage at a minimum
  • When surfing the internet - load a page (especially if it’s an article) and switch your mobile data off then browse through it and switch it back on if you want to fill in some information or proceed to another page for instance 
  • Try to get as much done as you can when you switch your mobile data on - check your WhatsApp, check and respond to emails, refresh your Facebook timeline, load tweets, etc. to avoid constantly switching it on to do each thing separately
  • Turn off auto-playing videos on your social media accounts as this can quickly deplete your data. You can find out how to do this in the FAQs of the particular platform

If your data is still vanishing or depleting abnormally, note down the date on which you bought your data and details of your usage and contact your service provider - you can do this via Resolver.

Vanishing airtime

Consumers bear the brunt of high out-of-bundle (OOB) data charges and service providers’ attempts to avoid OOB data usage don’t seem to have helped much. When you run out of data your phone uses your airtime automatically. While most of us would love to steer clear of OOB data charges, you find that sometimes the notification that you have run out of data is a little too late or, in some cases, does not come at all. Before you know it, you balance is on 0.00 across the board.

It is thus helpful to track your own data usage and have an idea of when it will run out
  • Use the data usage facility on your mobile to track your usage and have it warn you just before your bundle runs out so you buy another bundle in time and don’t start being charged at OOB data rates
WASP (Wireless Application Service Provider) services are also known to trick consumers into subscriptions resulting in airtime costs you don't account for. A WASP is a third party service provider who creates and distributes mobile content to subscribers using the networks of larger service providers. These services usually bill you a certain amount daily or weekly.
  • Cancel any WASP subscriptions you may have. Most mobile operators allow users to manage content subscriptions through SMS or USSD codes - so you can check to see whether you have been subscribed to a WASP service without you realising it. This information should be available on your service provider’s website. Alternatively, you can contact your provider through Resolver and have them check and block all subscriptions for you. You should constantly check this information just to be safe.

You should also take into consideration some of the data saving tips above if you continue using your internet at OOB rates.

If your airtime is still disappearing or depleting abnormally even after you have checked everything and monitored your use, note down the date on which you bought your airtime and the usage levels or patterns in as much detail as possible and contact your service provider immediately to explain your situation - you can do this via Resolver.

Who do you have an issue with?

Raise it for free via Resolver

Resolver promises

We will never share your personal data with anyone without your permission - your case will go to the firm you’re complaining about and, if appropriate, to an ombudsman.

If you find something wrong with a company or our processes, tell us and we will put it right.

You can raise a complaint against Resolver via Resolver itself.

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