The bigblu guide to tracking your data allowance

29th August 2018

Whether you have broadband through our satellite or 4G technologies, whether you have a bumper 200GB package or find that bigblu’s 10GB package is more than enough to keep you connected, we have put together a handy guide to help you keep control of your data.

A window on your data
If you’re a Windows 10 user, we have good news for you. Their April 2018 system update (version 1803) provides you with some great tools to make sure your broadband doesn’t grind to halt mid-BBC iPlayer documentary or cut-out on that Skype call to your nest-flown kids.

As well as being able to check and reset your data stats, there’s even better news for those of us on capped data plans. Now we can set data limits and background data restrictions when using a Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection, which is a great way to reduce unnecessary usage and stay under your data limit for the month.

The right side of the tracks
‘Sounds great but perhaps a little complicated’, I hear you cry (in my head). Not at all, even my technophobic mum and dad managed to crack it and my dad doesn’t even own a mobile phone or have an email address. Here’s how I talked him through it (talking over the house phone, of course – if you’re under 30, Google ‘house phone’ to find out what I’m going on about):

  • In the ‘Search’ box at the bottom of your screen, type ‘settings’;
  • Click on the cog wheel icon that comes up to open the ‘Settings’ page;
  • Click on Network & Internet to open up that section;
  • Click on Data Usage to open up that section (this is where the magic happens);
  • Use the “Show settings for” drop-down menu, and select the wireless or wired network you want to restrict;
  • Under “Data limit,” click the Set limit button; and
  • Then you can choose your limit type (monthly), your reset date (1st) and your limit (GB).

You can limit unnecessary usage by restricting what apps and features will use up data in the background and set up notifications to let you know when you’re close to hitting your limit.

The really important thing to take note of is that this Windows 10 data system will only monitor the data usage on that particular device and not every device in the network. So, if you’ve got a wife or husband or partner or kids or grandkids, you’ll have to keep an eye on their data usage too when calculating your monthly consumption.

All other routes (to data awareness)
If you or someone in your bigblu broadband-connected household has got either a MacBook, an iPhone, an iPad, an Android device or uses Windows 7 or 8, after a fair bit of trial and error (and using my mum as a guinea pig), I’d recommend using My Data Manager. You can download this knee-knockingly smart app from either Apple’s App store or Google Play for Android users.

When you first download the app to your device, it will ask you to enter your data plan details, including your billing cycle and data cap. Enter your bigblu tariff information at this point and you can use the Wi-Fi tracker to stay right on top of your month’s usage. You can then set up alerts to be notified when you have reached a certain point in your monthly limit (say, 50 or 80%).

One of the best things about My Data Manager is that after a few weeks of use, you’ll really get an accurate sense of what apps and actions are gobbling through your data, which will allow you to start making smarter better-informed broadband choices. Two of the other great things about My Data Manager is that it can track data usage across all the members of your bigblu data plan, whether there’s just the two of you or a whole big old barn-storming family; and it can manage your data across the different devices that make use of your bigblu broadband plan.

So, no more not knowing, no more data-ing in the dark, no more blind data, it’s time to step into the light, take control of our data and bid farewell to the choke and the throttle (see our A to Z Guide to make sense of those references).