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Help Absolutely insane data usage!!


Dec 3, 2013
I got my brand new S4 today...

I unboxed it, turned it on, connected to my wifi and set it up...

I downloaded the updates it requested,

I downloaded a couple of apps, facebook, whatsapp etc etc

I played around on google earth (pre installed) for maybe... 3 minutes,

did some random chrome browsing, 1 or 2 news websites etc.. 20 minutes,

5 hours laters.. (now), my wifi data usage reads:

android OS: 1.21 GB
google play store: 265mb
google earth: 58.81mb
chrome: 54mb
samsung apps 27.80mb
google play books: 22.11mb

for example.. google play books 22.11mb? I haven't even touched this app, I don't even know what it is.

I have done nowhere near anything which could merit even a fraction of this data usage,
I've only had facebook installed for less than an hour and it has already used 4mb of data, this is insane.

I am lucky that I have been using wifi and not mobile data

2gb in 5 hours? what's going on?

any help in desperately, kindly appreciated, thanks
Not a techie but as a user I've found a few things that are helpful.

First, remember that all of these apps have just been activated which means you've got a ton of data sitting in the cache, so get that cleared out (you can do it through the app mgr, an antivirus app, file mgr, etc. ). Rooting will make a huge difference in performance and zap the bloat, but I'll leave that to the rooters to dicuss. While non-rooters like me are still stuck with a lot of of bloatware, I recently wiped out the cache and whatever data I could from each junk app, and inactivated these apps which (I hope) will cut down on data usage. It also inactivates notifications and updates, which eat up more data. Once you've got everything configured, it should improve considerably. And as Goodspike mentioned, installing the OS update and other software during initial config. probably accounts for 75% of your data-fest.
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It's your first time running the phone, so everything is updating and syncing. That much in the beginning is normal.

For apps that are carrier installed (bloatware) or apps that you do not use (Google Play Books), you can disable them. Other apps, like Facebook for example, you can go into its settings and disable the refresh interval to never. Some apps allow you to disable syncing/updating or to set it to do so over WiFi only, so you just have to check their settings.

You can also go into your phones Settings > Accounts > Google and tap on the green icon next to your Gmail account. Disable things in there you do not want to be synced.

Also you can check Settings > Data Usage and (example) tap on YouTube. Scroll down and put a tick in the box for Disable background data. It will still use background data but it should now only do it over WiFi.

I normally use WiFi 98% of the time. When I'm out and about I use Google Maps to assist with routes and once in awhile check my Facebook if we're stuck in traffic (I don't drive).. so I have most things disabled unless I'm home.

Everyone's different in their usage habits, so I'm sure with a little time you will get things situated to where you want them and what suites you the best.
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I'm not a fan of disabling programs for little reason, but if updates concern you then you can set it to not automatically update apps. You will, however, need to pick through the updates that are available to update the ones you use, but that's not that big of a problem.

Also, many programs allow you to only update or sync when connected to wi-fi.

Overall though, I'd probably do nothing and just see what happens going forward. I don't think you're likely to find usage like what you did with a new phone, although if you're new to Android you might download a lot of apps you don't end up using. Only download apps when connected to wifi and there shouldn't be a concern.
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Also, don't be surprised that when things do stabilize on your phone, it will still use more data then your old smart phone. Just because its an 4G LTE device. I've had my S4 since June and using way more data then on my Atrix 4G, which was my last phone. For the most part, I have the same productivity apps, with the same settings as on my Atrix. You would think data usage would be around the same.

Maybe its because I'm enjoying reading more on my 5" screen, as opposed to the 4" screen I moved away from. :D
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