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Unknown data usage early morning

762912 Views 2,088 Replies Latest reply: Mar 10, 2014 2:09 PM by mjmsbrown RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • Big Marty Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 11, 2012 6:08 AM (in response to asfdj)

    It also happens on O2 network, something odd is going on. I thought my increase was down to iMessage but it's way too high. I have a 500MB monthly allowance and it resets on the 10th, I've hardly left my wifi zone since the reset and I've used 2MB so far, not a lot granted, but it is when I've not been on any apps when not connected to my wifi. I've just tried a reset of teh network settings, hopefully that helps. I did speak to O2 who were fairly useless, turn off 3G when using wifi was their answer, unbelievably, but this didn't seem to do the trick, data usage was still ticking over.

  • Matt Wolanski Level 6 Level 6 (10,255 points)
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    Aug 11, 2012 6:42 AM (in response to cnpeyton)

    In the past 19 months or so of the 4 lines on my account the lowest use was 30 MB in a month - the most on a single line was 1.4GB - back a few years I did exceed 5GB in a single month on one line but that largely due to bad WiFi at a hotel and lots of Netflix.

     

    I am considering the new shared data plan - while it might increase my monthly bill by $5 or $10 overall - since it includes unlimited talk I don't need to add $20 a month for unlimited microcell - and can dump my $65/month land line - and just use the cell without needing to wory (nearly as much) that one user will trip over their individual limit and cost me extra $.

  • rphunte42 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
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    Aug 11, 2012 8:24 AM (in response to Lawrence Finch)

    Lawrence Finch wrote:

     

    rphunte42 wrote:

     

    I have found that if I leave the phone plugged into the Apple supplied ac charger at night, I don't see the large late night data use.  If I don't plug it in overnight, then I get the late night data use. 

    The reason is that when the phone is plugged in WiFi stays on; when it is unplugged WiFi turns off 45 seconds after the phone goes to sleep to save the battery. So you are probably not using any less data, it's just all going over WiFi.

    Which is fine, as I don't pay by the byte for wi-fi.  As long as the phone isn't adding up costly data transmissions, I really don't care if it sends  a lot of data.

  • MPG67 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 12, 2012 6:48 AM (in response to cnpeyton)

    I went to Settings/General/About/Diagnostics & Usage and selected Don't Send.

     

    Since Apple and AT&T both point the finger at each other as a way of avoiding responsibility for the data pull and billing, I am opting out of that losing game.

     

    I may not be able to eliminate all the data that gets sent out against my wishes, but Don't Send at least reduces it.

  • doncht Level 1 Level 1 (90 points)
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    Aug 12, 2012 7:01 AM (in response to cnpeyton)

    Try to turn off iCloud when it is not used since it will continue to forward traffic even when idle. /___sbsstatic___/migration-images/192/19243823-1.gif

  • gpmic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 16, 2012 5:35 AM (in response to cnpeyton)

    Well add me to the list of mystery high data usage.  I got hit with a 2.9GB charge at 0100 hours on a Monday!  There is no way I was A) using my phone at that time and B) not on wifi.  I already have the automatic send of diagnostic information turned off.  The only two things I can come up with that would use even close to 2.9GB are...

     

    1) iCloud backup that for some reason took place over data plan and not wifi.

    2) Some type of vicious app looping that constantly was trying to send an email or something over and over again.

     

    Of course talking to AT&T tech support was useless as she kept on saying that maybe I was watching a movie over data at 1 o'clock in the morning.  If that's the case, I apparently have found a way to hack Netflix into streaming blu-ray quality movies over data, all while being asleep. 

     

    I wouldn't be surprised if AT&T has some shady business practices when it comes to data usage and finding ways to charge data to their users.  Unfortunately, since data usage through AT&T is a black hole of information and there's no way to prove it, I will from now on be stuck turning off my data usage before I go to bed.

  • rphunte42 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
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    Aug 18, 2012 8:06 AM (in response to gpmic)

    gpmic wrote:

     

    Well add me to the list of mystery high data usage.  I got hit with a 2.9GB charge at 0100 hours on a Monday!  There is no way I was A) using my phone at that time and B) not on wifi.  I already have the automatic send of diagnostic information turned off.  The only two things I can come up with that would use even close to 2.9GB are...

     

    1) iCloud backup that for some reason took place over data plan and not wifi.

    2) Some type of vicious app looping that constantly was trying to send an email or something over and over again.

     

    Of course talking to AT&T tech support was useless as she kept on saying that maybe I was watching a movie over data at 1 o'clock in the morning.  If that's the case, I apparently have found a way to hack Netflix into streaming blu-ray quality movies over data, all while being asleep. 

     

    I wouldn't be surprised if AT&T has some shady business practices when it comes to data usage and finding ways to charge data to their users.  Unfortunately, since data usage through AT&T is a black hole of information and there's no way to prove it, I will from now on be stuck turning off my data usage before I go to bed.

    In case you missed the earlier discussion:

    If you leave the phone powered on, and NOT plugged into the Apple supplied charger, or other suitable charger, it will shut off the wi-fi after a few seconds on non-use, and any data that needs to be sent will go out through the cellular data network.  The only way I have found to prevent these 'nocturnal transmissions' is to plug it in overnight, or remember to shut down the cellular data radio before you retire for the night.  I find it easier to just plug it in and enjoy a fully charged battery for the next day.  If I forget, inevitably, I find that it send several megabytes of data during the night.  Not a concern for me as I have an unlimited data plan, but I would STILL like to know just what it is sending, to whom, and why.  It's obvious Apple doesn't care, and ATT isn't going to tell us.

  • BTackett1 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 27, 2012 1:28 PM (in response to rphunte42)

    I have had the same issues but it doesnt matter whether my phone is plugged in or not I still a large amount of data being used between 12:30 and 2 in the morning! I work for the local cable/phone/internet company and also have a wifi network at home and i never had this issue with my old 3GS! When I call AT&T they of course tell me to call Apple because its an issue with the phone, they even gave me a new sim card and there was no change in the data issue!

  • amy_lou Level 4 Level 4 (1,550 points)
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    Aug 27, 2012 1:32 PM (in response to BTackett1)

    The data usage times are not in real-time. I know this for a fact. It might look like large amounts of data are being used at a certain point in time when, in fact, these totals are aggregated at the discretion of the carrier. They could be from the last 3 hours or the last 24 hours and represent a lump of data that was used over a period of time.

  • Big Marty Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 27, 2012 1:43 PM (in response to amy_lou)

    They are on O2 in the UK.

  • GoatRider Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 27, 2012 2:15 PM (in response to cnpeyton)

    Well, here's a good sign- I was camping last week, away from cell phone coverage, and had my phone in airplane mode the entire time. I did not get any data usage during that time.

     

    On the other hand, DataMan says I've used 10meg for the month, but ATT says I've used 17meg. Small potatoes, and I'm not even close to my limit, but I'm still concerned it doesn't match.

  • nicbee333 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 27, 2012 3:47 PM (in response to cnpeyton)

    I have been following this discussion for some months now as I also HAD this issue where my phone was totally randomly using data when it should not have been.  After trialling MANY different possible 'solutions' (none of which solved my issue) - I made one single change which I believe has the key to the root cause.  I no longer use Apple Mail - I have switched to the GMAIL App and my data dissolving issue has disappeared.  Now I had noticed that often with Apple Mail that it would 'hang' while completing it's processing (sometimes I had to reboot to get it to stop).  I believe that this 'hanging' was affecting the data usage and ticking over at the same time.  I am totally comfortable with the GMAIL App solution (as I run in Google Apps) so would recommend that those of you having an issue - try this and see if it makes a difference.  The app is free and you have nothing to loose!

  • MHays Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 27, 2012 7:00 PM (in response to nicbee333)

    Update: AT&T Refund For Mystery Data Charges

     

    Our son has an iPhone 4s, and we ran into the same "mystery" data charges early this year.  In addition to the large hits that always occur around midnight (allegedly due to "rollups" in the AT&T billing system) we were charged for data use while our son was in the hospital for a few weeks -- with the iPhone turned off and no battery power.  These charges were obviously bogus, not due to the usual explanations offered by AT&T Customer Service.  After 5 calls and escalation to a supervisor, they refunded all of the overage.

     

    Based on all of the good info in this forum, I found that keeping the iPhone on the charger all night PLUS turning on "airplane mode" eliminated the big midnight 'rollups'.  This was good news, but begs the question: Why did the rollups vanish -- if they were really 'rolling up' data from the previous day?  The same 'rollup' should have appeared again later, but did not. There appears to be a problem with AT&T's billing system.

     

    I also found that some iPhone apps appear to gobble data -- unbeknownst to the user.  For example, (1) TextFree constantly pushes ads including images.  Even if you pay the 'no ads' fee, the TextFree rep told me that this simply 'hides' the ads.  The images are still downloaded and related data charges continue.  (2) Turn off auto-backup to iCloud, as others have noted.  (3) If your iPhone is turned off and a 'social media' app is not accessed for a a few weeks, you may be hit by a significant data charge when you reconnect -- and updates from all of your 'friends' are automatically downloaded. 

     

    There still appeared to be a problem with phantom data charges, however.  So.. when our son went to Peru this summer and then to camp -- without his iPhone -- I installed Dataman Pro and logged all of the data transactions on AT&T's website vs Dataman.  Surprise!  Despite powering down the iPhone, data charges still appeared on AT&T when our son was away, that were not recorded by Dataman.  The midnight 'rollups' were gone, but new data transactions appeared.  The volume was reduced compared to earlier this year -- but we were still charged for 'overage' that did not make sense. 

     

    I called AT&T again and heard the familiar list of explanations.  The Customer Service rep quickly backed down, however, when I walked through the dates and evidence.  Similar to the problem early this year, he offered a refund. 

     

    I also upgraded to the 3Gb data plan (only $15 more per month) because some of the people on this site said the 'mystery' data charges went away with the upgrade.  (Interesting -- pay more and the problems go away...)  Again, I will be watching the Dataman Pro and AT&T logs, and will let you know what I find.

     

    Bottom line, here are four recommendations:  (1) Connect your iPhone to the charger at night AND switch to "airplane" mode.  See if the 'midnight rollups' disappear.  (2) Remove apps that automatically push/pull data.  (3) Log all of your data transactions in Dataman Pro and export your usage reports from AT&T's website, so you can check the details -- which will definitely help if you need to demand a refund from AT&T, and (4) Don't give up if you call AT&T Customer Service and receive the usual litany of explanations.  Patiently but firmly describe the issues you found, and point to specific data transactions that are suspicious.  Ask to speak to a supervisor if you do not receive an appropriate refund.

     

    I hope this long post is helpful.  I will let you know what I find with the new 3Gb data plan.

     

    Mark Hays 

  • Scotwlcx Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Sep 1, 2012 11:06 AM (in response to MHays)

    Mark, very nice post. Very inciteful. This has been such a headache for me and thousands of AT&T users. There have been many good posts on this thread. There has been only ONE COMMON DENOMINATOR...those experiencing these problems are all AT&T users. Have we heard from any Verizon or Sprint users on this topic?  I have been scanning the Internet on this and have not come across one from a different carrier. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.

     

    Maybe we all have a particular Application in common?? Does everyone here have he facebook ap installed? How about the att app? Maybe it's cause by a native app that's only on AT&T iPhones?   Maybe we all have the same virus on our phones?

     

    The puzzling thing in my situation is that my wife has the same iPhone 4s on the same operating system and her data usage is about 1/4 of what mine is... Per AT&T.     AND she still has iCloud installed and on and is still having her email pushed to her iPhone.

     

    I spoke with apple today and she recommended that I backup and then restore as new. After that, I will have to see if my data consumption is still through the roof. I then can slowly reinstall my apps. Seems like a lot of work for me.

  • rlasten Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Sep 1, 2012 2:01 PM (in response to cnpeyton)

    I came across the same problem and there is one thing I found that gave me some hope of resolution. I haven't confirmed that it solved anything yet but I thought I would share it anyway in case you wanted to check your settings and try it out.

     

    Go to Settings > iCloud > Documents & Data and switch the "Use Cellular" option to OFF.

     

    This could explain many things. Since these "Documents & Data" are app dependent the amount of data transferred is going to vary by user and their particular set of installed apps. Apple now allows app developers to have their apps back up data in iCloud which is turned on by default. You can turn this off per app in iCloud settings under "Manage Storage", I think.

     

    At the very minimum, users with limited data plans should turn this "Use Cellular" feature off because as noted before, during the night, while you sleep, WiFi is automatically switched off and I'm assuming these apps still keep trying to send "Documents & Data" to iCloud, so it ends up using your Cellular Data.

     

    I recently turned this "feature" off and will be monitoring my sleep-surfing midnight data usage to see if it helped.

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