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iPhone 4 using Cellular Data when on standby and connected to wifi.

65529 Views 53 Replies Latest reply: Jun 10, 2012 8:33 AM by SeaHunter RSS
  • Richard15 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    Well first off you shouldn't have lost Unlimited data unless you CHOOSE to opt out for one of the new plans. When I first got my iPhone 4 I was asked if I wanted to keep unlimited. You might want to check on that if you want to get it back. My two cents...
    iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.4), iPhone 4
  • macminiwannabe Level 1 Level 1 (70 points)

    I am getting an iPhone 4 soon (when they come to Canada) with a special cheap plan I negotiated. This plan gives me 150 MB of data. Since this is not enough for normal iPhone usage, I will be depending on the cell data block, and keeping it on way unless I want to do something using data (if I get lost/ need to check my email/show someone something, etc.). I don't have VVM with my plan just regular VM, no MMS just SMS so I think they will be fine w/o data. I have Wi-Fi almost everywhere I go, so not having data is no biggie to me, I just don't want a charge. Does this block really work, or does it sometimes leak like the other 3rd party apps did? My old iPhone was bought with no data at all and a data block on my account from my provider. That is no longer possible. This is my 1st time using actual data on a phone and worried about accidentally getting a 200$ bill.

    Thanks a lot
    Macbook Gen 2, Mac OS X (10.6.2)
  • Angelo77 Calculating status...
    Did anyone figure out why iPhone 4 *in standby* with all "automatic" features disabled (f.i. push, ...) even connected with WiFi is using time by time the *cell data network so frequently*?
    This "bug" is draining data plan amount and battery of course without a meaning...
    Mac OS X (10.6)
  • Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
    Heres what I got out of this thread:

    When the iPhone 4 goes to sleep, the wifi connection gets disconnected to save battery life (but not when the phone is connected via USB).

    After the iPhone 4 goes to sleep, the cellular connection takes over when checking for anything that is being sent to your iPhone 4 (emails, app data etc), and this is just so you get it right away.

    So instead of you getting these emails / app data an hour later when you finally decide to unlock the phone and connect to a wifi network, the cellular connection picks any data up, feeds it through and then you can explore it further once you unlock your device and have a wifi connection.

    I myself have the 2GB data plan, and the highest amount of data I used in a month so far was 900MB, so I strongly recommend getting the 1GB data plan, or 2GB data plan if you intend to use it up eventually (like me)
    G5, Mac OS X (10.6.4), NONE . lol :P
  • Angelo77 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the kind explanation, this could be reasonable and it explains why is doing this during standby only when unplugged.

    But what I don't understand is why it should check emails and app data automatically if push and email checks are disabled or set to manual.
    In my opinion makes no sense that the cell would connect so frequently (every half a minute!!!) all the night/day if I'm not using it. Moreover it makes no sense to have data always up to date if battery is going to be empty so quickly without using the phone...

    Is there a way to disable this "feature"?
    - something like: if (standby) then (disable data cell network communication). -
    Mac OS X (10.6.4), iPhone 4G from iPhone 2G, iPad
  • mikeds_80 Calculating status...
    I just recently started having this same problem. Even though I am at home with a wi-fi network, my phone is sucking down about 40MB a day (and incidentally draining my battery at the same time). I have had my iPhone 4 for two months now, but just in the past week, my battery has begun going down about 3 times as fast and I'm using about 10x the amount of data. Other than manually turning cellular data on and off every time I leave my house, is there a setting that can fix this problem?
    iOS 4
  • 3dpaint Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
    why the **** Apple do not include a firewall that I can for ex. choose each app how to use internet, whether wifi or 3G or both together!!!

    in this way I can simply choose (with my only 100mb plan):

    3G for messenger.
    both for facebook.
    WiFi for safari, youtube & App store.

    so, I can rest my head and my time! rather than work
    like a machine to switching on/off cellular data!!

    is it that much difficult Apple?!@#$%^&*()
    Dell M4400, Windows XP Pro
  • Jay Beale Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
    Mr. Simmonds - could you provide us with an update as to how you came out on this issue? Your last comment came after the discussion of disabling data over 3G. Clearly this work around should be effective, but as you noted it is not automatic. Have you been doing this manually (i.e., disabling/re-enabling data over 3G)? Or have you found a better solution?
    iPhone 4, iOS 4
  • pcunite Calculating status...

    What is needed is an option on the iPhone to automatically disable cellular data when a threshold gets reached. It is obvious that the carriers are not going to help us out when we go past their pittlely 200mb data plans by accident.

  • celeste1980 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Could also be Carrier IQ Data - see  What bugs me is that the user should be controlling what gets transmitted by default not by shutting al the access off. 

  • Serotonin Calculating status...

    I have an upsized version of this problem.


    I have a 6 GB/mo plan (got it on promo) in Oct 2010 with a new iPhone 4. Since, I average about 1-2 GB usage per month, having hit a high of 3 GB in December.


    Yesterday, only 12 days into my billing cycle, I get a message saying I'm at 80% usage. I do tend to keep my wifi off to attempt to make a dent in the 6 GB, and I do watch streaming shows, but no more than I have in the past without issue. Same habits for months and only hit a high of 3 last month.


    To be sure, I turn my wifi on yesterday before 2pm. I was in a basement that generally has horrible cell reception, and about 15 ft from the router for most of the day/evening.


    Then I find out that 500 mb had been used between last night and today, with only a 25 min window when I was driving to work not on wifi.


    Is it possible to use that much data while connected to wifi? I called my carrier (Rogers) and they kept saying that it's possible for data to be used while on wifi, but any time I specified whether it was possible for 500 mb to be "seeped" out within a day while on wifi, they just repeated the same mantra.


    Now I have to rule out the options. I have cell data off and can only wait. If cell data is still being used, then my account/SIM/etc have obviously been compromised or some error by my carrier. If not, I can only assume a corrupt app.


    Is 500 mb data use via 3G while connected to wifi even possible?

  • celeste1980 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I've found that mine can suck up 50MB in a few minutes when cell data is on.  SoI leave it off and everything works just fine when I'm on a wifi.  If I choose to turn on cell data it would be when i am on the road and need to check email or download a map for a route.  Then I turn it off.  I turn off wifi unless I need it too - for useless data trasfer and fo battery.


    I have noticed that Cell data is used even when Wifi is a viable option for the phone.  Some developers of apps may be unaware of how to use only wifi, maybe it is not an option, or maybe it is IOS or the carrier doing the transmitting.  I don't even like amount of wifi data transmission that goes on even if it doesn't directly affect my bill.


    Neither the battery nor the data consumption were an issue for ios4 and Apple support says they are aware of the problems with IOS 5 - so I wonder why they did not wait and fix the issues before release...

  • dhuber Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I am having the same problem as Serotonin.  I have a 200MB/month plan, and I found that it was being used up rapidly even though I spend most of my time connected to a wifi network. 


    I reviewed my detailed charges on my carrier's (AT$T) website and found that I was getting large data usage at times when I am obviously on the wifi network.  I called AT&T, and they said my wifi was probably dropping out.  Now I know that this is not the case because I have my computer connected to the wifi, too, and if the wifi went down I would see my vpn disconnect. Also, I have 3 bars on the iphone's wifi meter, and the 3G symbol never shows up. 


    AT&T suggested that I go to the Apple store, and the guys at the Genius bar had no idea what was causing the problem.  I enabled my cellular data access while in the store, reset the usage statistics, and the phone racked up 5 MB of usage during the hour that they tried to figure out the problem.  During the time, the phone was not used for anything except examining the settings.  This continued to happen even after the phone was rebooted, and we verified that no other user applications were running.  The Apple guys' recommendation was to reset the phone to factory settings and see if that fixes the problem. 


    According to the Apple guys, it is not possible for an iphone app to use the cellular network for data transmission if you are on a wifi network. I'm not sure if I believe this, since I do see some small data usage when on the wifi, and both the Apple guys and the AT&T tech support said that it is normal to see some small amount of data usage even if on wifi.


    Also, the AT&T rep said that the large data charges that I see in my bill that post in the middle of the night are not actually occuring at that time, but are just daily rollups of charges that happen during the day.  He could not explain, however, why some charges are posted this way and some are posted when the actually occur.


    Also, according to the Apple guys, there is no app that can track what apps are sending data.  This makes it pretty hard to figure out if the massive data usage is coming from one of my apps.


      If anyone else is experiencing this problem, please post.  Maybe if it happens to enough people, someone at Apple will consider it to be worth investigating.

  • velinot Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Having same problem with my IPAD.  IPAD hasn't left home, is connected to wifi, & yet is using cellular data.  I just turned cellular data off, but agree with many other comments that I shouldn't have to do that ... the IPAD should know that I don't want to use my cellular data when I'm in a location where there is wifi. 

  • Lawrence Finch Level 7 Level 7 (24,595 points)

    WiFi is turned off when the iDevice is on standby, unless it is connected to power. This is to save battery, as WiFi uses power continuously whether it is exchanging data or not, unlike cellular that only uses power when actually sending or receiving.


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