Simple ways on how to reduce data usage

Data rates in Uganda don’t come cheap so it is quite frustrating when your weekly bundle is expiring on just the third day. Usually, this situation is on us but we are unaware of where the exact problem is and how to reduce data usage. Before you blame the internet service providers, you need to do some checks on your devices just to be sure.

Also read: Check out the apps that drain your battery the most

Here is how to reduce data usage through different methods

1.Airtel brought us Tugabane, one of the company’s greatest features that allows people to share data with others. This has come in handy for a lot of people. However, some people tend to add themselves to other people’s tugabane accounts without the owner’s notice. This will obviously result in data expiring quite fast.


Check your Tugabane account to be sure that there aren’t other numbers depending on your data. Simply dial *100*3# then go to option 8, which is Data share > option 1 then choose 3 to check status and 2 to deactivate incase you have to remove some numbers.

2.Some of the major culprits are apps running in the background. What usually happens with these apps is that every time you switch on your mobile data, these apps will refresh even when they’re not open at the moment. If you have a number of apps open that are especially data-intensive, they’ll use up your data quite fast.


If you have an iPhone older than an iPhone X, all you need to do is press your home button twice, and just swipe up on the apps you want to cancel. For those of you who don’t have a home button (iPhone X and above), you’ll need to just swipe from the bottom to bring up your apps, and then just swipe them away.

To close your background apps on Android;

  • Close one app: Swipe up from the bottom of your device, hold, then let go. Swipe up on the app.
  • Close all apps: Swipe up to about the middle of your screen, swipe all the way to the left until you see the Clear all option.

Read also: How to stop using background mobile data on Android

3.Whatever video app you’re using, making sure you have autoplay turned off. You can usually turn this feature off in the settings option for any video app. Who knows how many times I’ve had YouTube videos running on repeat in my pocket because I forgot to turn off autoplay. Make sure you turn off autoplay so you don’t have videos constantly running that drain your data.

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4.As we try to adapt to the new normal, we find that there is more internet usage and we need to hotspot a number of devices to get everything running. Not just for texting but to carry out basic activities like learning, work and much more.


If you are using your mobile phone as a hotspot, you can simply set a password to stop unwanted users from accessing the data. It is also recommended to change the password from time to time just in case.

Hot spotting your laptop could make your data get depleted really fast too. People using Windows 10 can attest to this. By default, Windows 10 keeps some apps running in the background, and they eat up a lot of data. In fact, the Mail app, in particular, is a major offender.


You can turn off some of these apps by going to Settings > Privacy > Background apps. Then toggle off apps that use background data that you don’t need. In my case, it was pretty much all of those apps that are listed. Another method is to set a data limit.

  1. Select the Start  button, then select Settings  > Network & Internet > Status.
  2. Under the network, you’re connected to, select Data usage.
  3. Under Choose a network, select the network that your want to set a data limit for.
  4. Select Enter limit, choose the Limit type you have for your data plan, enter other limit info, and then select Save.

5.Adjusting your smartphone habits is one other option. You could spend less time using your devices. If you’re consistently finding that you use too much data, you can always just set the phone down and do something else. Try turning on a movie, playing a video game, or read a book.

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