How Much Data Does FaceTime Video Calling Use?

Last updated: April 21, 2017 - 3:42pm EDT

Before you start using FaceTime to make calls to your family and friends, you may be looking for more information about how much data it uses, to make sure you won’t be left with 0GB of data for the rest of the month, or are faced with an alarming phone bill at month’s end. We’ve got you covered – in this article, we’ll tell you how much data this free app uses, and how to avoid breaking the bank if you use FaceTime.

Does FaceTime use data or Wi-Fi?

If you make a FaceTime video call using your iPhone’s mobile data connection (3G/LTE), it will use your data plan. Depending on the type of mobile connection your device uses and the length of your call, the amount of data used will vary slightly. Usually, FaceTime doesn’t use much data unless your call is long.

How much data does FaceTime use if its not connected to Wi-Fi?

On a 3G network, a 10-minute video call will use approximately 30MB of data. On an LTE network, the same 10-minute call will use about 25MB of data. If you have an older iPhone model, your phone will likely not have LTE connection capability.

If you’re using FaceTime on an iPad, iPod, or Mac computer, your only options for Internet connection will be to use a Wi-Fi network, so you don’t have to worry about mobile data plan usage. However, if your home Wi-Fi has a limit of how much data you can use per month, you should be mindful of the amount of time you spend making video calls.

Tips to avoid using up your data with FaceTime

1. Connect to a Wi-Fi network if possible.

If you’re in a place where you can connect to Wi-Fi (e.g., at home, at work, a library, etc.), connect your device to Wi-Fi before making or receiving calls. This will make it so that your mobile data plan isn’t being used whatsoever.

2. Keep the length of your calls short.

If you need to use your mobile data connection to make or receive a video call, try not to make the call overly long. The longer your call is, the more data will be used. If the call isn’t urgent, try to wait until you can access a Wi-Fi connection.

3. If you have a newer iPhone, enable LTE rather than using a 3G connection.

If your iPhone is a newer model, it will have LTE network capability. Using LTE will use slightly less data than a 3G network, so it’s a good idea to switch networks if you can. You can check this by going into Settings > Cellular > Cellular Data Options > Enable LTE.

 

That’s it for this article about data usage. We hope it gave you the answers you were looking for! If you have questions, leave us a comment below. Check out the rest of our free Facetime course to learn more about how to use FaceTime.

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