Windows Phone 7 data usage, first update

A little less than a month ago, I wrote a post, Windows Phone 7 data usage, in which I described my data usage experience with Windows Phone. Since my latest monthly billing period with AT&T just ended (on November 2), it’s time for the first update. In order to keep things in perspective, I’ve edited the chart below to include April 2010, like the first one, since that month was cut off in the new report.

But I also needed to make another important change to chart. You may recall from the first post that I had divided the chart into “iPhone” and “Windows Phone” sections to indicate where the data usage came from. Looking at this month’s chart, I can see I got the dates wrong, by a month. (My billing period ends on the 2nd.) I started using Windows Phone exclusively in early July, as noted previously. But I had placed the dividing line forward too far forward incorrectly before. Here’s what it looks like now:


(Edit: I’ve redone the chart in Excel and will use that going forward.)

As you can see, that’s a pretty serious jump (almost double) in usage from September to October. This could indicate a number of things–increased app store usage due to more available apps and/or my just traveling more over the newer time period, for starters, but when you compare it to the other Windows Phone usage months, it’s not actually that much higher than the average over July-October (which is 189.06 MB).

But even with this amount of information, I think I’d be leaning more towards AT&T’s 2 GB plan, as opposed to the lower end 200 MB plan, simply because I’d probably have to micromanage data usage otherwise. (And AT&T excellent myWireless app is now available on Windows Phone, by the way, which would at least make that possible.) I happen to have unlimited data because I was grandfathered in, but if I was starting fresh, that’s what I’d personally choose.

Then again, maybe I need more time. If data usage dives in November, I’m not sure what to think.

I’ll keep tracking it…

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20 Responses to Windows Phone 7 data usage, first update

  1. alanburchill says:

    Why dont you host the excel spreadsheet in Office Web Apps and share it out to the public as read only… ?

  2. roteague says:

    Great. Are you still experiencing fewer dropped calls with the WP7?

    • Paul Thurrott says:

      I have still only dropped one call in five months of use, yes. In fact, you may know that I just spent 8 days on the road, and I made many calls in Seattle and that area, and in Las Vegas, then a call from Charlotte, NC on the way home, and then a few from Boston. Not one dropped call on the whole trip. It’s been night and day, as we say.

      • gpsarakis says:

        You’ve found a new line of WP7 marketing MS can use vs Apple Paul!

        Switch to WP7 where dropped calls aren’t by design!

  3. publieus says:

    I suggest exporting your data from ATT and categorizing each day i.e. travel, work, etc to get a more accurate usage breakdown by activity. Good idea from Alan about hosting via Office.

  4. danj67 says:

    One item you missed Paul….. Netflix streaming on a phone seems to be all the rage…..I use to do it on my Iphone…. But I got a text informing me I was at the end of my data usuage…. I would watch netflix on my lunch… avg time was aprox 20 minutes… That consumed 98Megs worth of data…..This was of course over the 3g network…..The app has become useless under the guidelines set by AT&T

    • Paul Thurrott says:

      Right. I wouldn’t personally do that, but … yeah. Ideally, you could do this over Wi-Fi, of course, not just for the bandwidth but for video quality.

  5. Mike Mathias says:

    hi paul can you please add a twitter button to the site?

  6. Pingback: WP7: Data Usage and 1 Dropped Call in 5 Months

  7. mightygorath says:

    This is reassuring. I just got my HTC Trophy 7 a week and a half ago, and was wondering how I was going to be hit my my 500MB per month usage plan.
    Looks like I’ll be OK then!

  8. gpsarakis says:

    How many apps have you loaded onto your phone so far? And has the start screen gotten to the point where it’s starting to get a bit too long from all the pinned items? Makes me wonder if we’ll ever get the ability to make personal “hubs”, like folders in a sense, so we can manage things better in the future.

    • Paul Thurrott says:

      I’ve installed dozens of apps/games, but not all are on the Start screen, of course. I have nine rows of icons on the Start screen, so it’s just one flick to go from top to bottom. I don’t see it getting much bigger than that.

  9. Pingback: Datenvolumen - Windows Phone 7 Allgemein - Windows Phone Forum

  10. roberthleeii says:


    even if you dropped to the lowest data plan wouldn’t it be cheaper on average. the way i see it is if you don’t use more than 400mb of data your best bet is to go with the lowest plan. in your case above you tracked 7 months of data use. 3 of them you used less than 200 mb and 4 you used 200 – 400. for the 3 months you used less than 200 they would have charged you $15 and for the others they would charge you $30. that saves you $45 over 7 months of use. I personally am going to try to keep my $30 5gig plan even though my data use is similar to your usage.

  11. Pingback: Windows Phone 7 data usage, second update | Windows Phone Secrets

  12. Pingback: Windows Phone data usage, December 2010 | Windows Phone Secrets

  13. Pingback: Microsoft Investigates WP7 ‘Phantom Data’ Reports | eWEEK Europe UK

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