How Much Data Is Right For You?

Understanding your data needs is crucial today when the internet fits snugly in our pockets. As we continue to enjoy the marvels of mobile connectivity, it’s important to choose the right cellphone plan and manage your phone and app settings optimally. With Consumer Cellular’s SmartFlex (formerly known as Auto-upgrade), navigating your data usage has never been easier. This service ensures you always have access to high-speed data without the worry of overage fees.

Understanding Your Data Usage

Data usage varies significantly depending on your online activities. Whether you’re streaming your favorite show, scrolling through social media, or checking emails, each task consumes data differently. Here’s a breakdown of how much data everyday tasks typically use:

  • Emailing without attachments uses minimal data, roughly 1MB per email read or sent.
  • Web Browsing can consume about 1-3MB per webpage. However, sites that are heavy in media can use more.
  • Social Media platforms vary, with an hour of scrolling using 90MB, depending on video and image content.
  • Streaming Music averages around 150MB per hour.
  • Streaming Video in standard definition can use about 0.7GB (700MB) per hour, while high-definition streaming consumes 3GB per hour or more.
  • Video Calls such as those on Zoom or Skype can use up to 1GB of data per hour, depending on the quality.
  • Online Gaming ranges from 40MB to 300MB per hour, based on the game’s complexity and real-time data exchange.

How to Check Your Data Usage

Curious about how much data you’re using on your mobile plan? Keeping track of your data usage is key to staying on top of your wireless plan and avoiding surprises on your bill. At Consumer Cellular, we make it easy to stay informed about your data consumption. You can access your monthly mobile data history through your account online or on our free app. Additionally, most smartphones come equipped with a built-in feature in their settings menu that allows you to check your data usage in real time. With these tools at your fingertips, managing your data usage has never been simpler.

For iPhone Users:

  1. Open Settings: Tap on the Settings app icon, which looks like a gear icon, on your iPhone’s home screen.
  2. Find Cellular: Scroll down the Settings menu and tap on “Cellular” or “Mobile Data,” depending on your iOS version.
  3. View Data Usage: Within the Cellular/Mobile Data menu, you’ll see your current data usage displayed. This section typically shows the amount of data you’ve used in the current billing period.
  4. Reset Statistics: If you want to track your data usage for a specific period, you can reset the statistics by scrolling to the bottom of the Cellular/Mobile Data menu and tapping on “Reset Statistics.” This will clear the current period’s data usage and start tracking anew.

For Android Users:

  1. Open Settings: Tap the Settings app icon on your Android device’s home screen, which looks like a gear or cogwheel.
  2. Find Connections or Network & Internet: Depending on your Android device’s manufacturer and software version, you’ll find “Connections” or “Network & Internet” in the Settings menu. Tap on it.
  3. Tap on Data Usage: In the Connections or Network & Internet menu, locate and tap on “Data Usage.” This will show you a breakdown of your data usage.
  4. View Data Usage Details: Within the Data Usage menu, you’ll see a graph displaying your data usage over a specified period. You can adjust the time frame to view your usage for a particular billing cycle.
  5. Set Data Warning or Limit (Optional): Some Android devices allow you to set a data warning or limit to help you manage your usage. If available, you can set a warning to alert you when you’re nearing your data limit or set a hard limit to prevent overage charges.

What’s the Right Data Plan for You?

Have you wondered which Consumer Cellular data plan suits you best? Let’s break it down:

1GB Plan:

This plan is ideal for those who are almost always connected to Wi-Fi. It suits users who have a basic smartphone or a flip phone and engage in very minimal data activities like occasional email checks or weather updates.

5GB Plan:

This plan is perfect for users who still enjoy the security of frequent Wi-Fi access but venture online more regularly. If you browse the web, send emails, and use light apps while away from Wi-Fi, the 5GB plan will meet your needs without worry.


This plan is for smartphone users who enjoy a bit more digital freedom. Whether scrolling through social media, downloading apps, streaming videos of the grandkids, or getting lost in the latest mobile games, this plan has you covered. Plus, there’s enough data to keep your music streaming as you navigate with maps.


Are you always on the go, streaming videos on Netflix, making FaceTime calls, or streaming music non-stop? Then our Unlimited plan might be your best bet.

Consumer Cellular has a plan to fit every lifestyle. So, whether you’re a light surfer or a data devourer, we’ve got you covered. Check out our plans and choose the option that suits your needs. No need to worry about going over your limit. And with SmartFlex, you can enjoy peace of mind without keeping track of your usage.

Tips for Managing Your Data

  • Use Wi-Fi Whenever Possible: Keep Wi-Fi on and connect to free networks when available to save on data usage.
  • Monitor Your Usage: Regularly check your data consumption in the My Consumer Cellular app or via the My Account section on our website.
  • Adjust App Settings: Install or update apps using Wi-Fi and tweak app settings to minimize data use (e.g., turning off auto-play videos on social media).

Managing Your Data With SmartFlex

Consumer Cellular’s SmartFlex feature ensures you’re always on the best possible plan for your actual data usage. If you exceed your plan’s data or minute limits within a month, we’ll automatically shift you to a plan that covers your usage. This adjustment secures the best rate for your needs and removes the worry of overage charges.

Here’s how SmartFlex works for you:

  • Automatic Upgrades: If your data usage exceeds your current plan’s limit, we automatically flex you up to the next plan level – just pay the new plan’s price (for as low as $5 per month).
  • Usage Alerts: You’ll receive notifications when an upgrade happens, informing you about your plan status. You can also opt-in to alerts via MyAccount when you use 50% or 75% of your plan’s data allotment.
  • Flexibility: After the billing cycle, you can remain on the new plan or switch to a different one that better suits your needs – with no plan change fees.
  • For High-Data Users: On our most extensive data plan, if you exceed 50GB, you’ll still have data access but at reduced speeds, ensuring you’re never completely cut off.

Opting In or Out of SmartFlex

SmartFlex is designed with your convenience in mind, but we understand the need for personal choice. You can opt in or out of automatic upgrades at any time, free of charge, by contacting Customer Care.

Your data needs are as unique as you are. By understanding how different online activities affect your data usage and utilizing tools like SmartFlex, you can enjoy the vast world of the internet worry-free. Consumer Cellular is here to help you navigate this journey, ensuring you always have the best plan for your lifestyle.