Anyone else watching their gigs disappear too fast since new device?


    How many have found when forced to upgrade from 4g to 4g lte the very same pages you used to access now eat mbs like water using up whatever gigs bought in half the time as before. I thought the "free" 9 gigs over 3 months were going faster than normal but was too busy to be able to monitor and act on it. I was forced to upgrade in late August, I believe it was, when they stopped transmitting to my old ZTE device. This is mid December and I have gone through the first 9 gigs, 5 gigs and am halfway through the second 5 courtesy gigs (for which I do thank t mobile).


    Normally,  3 gigs do seem to go a bit faster than 5 gigs, averaging a gig a week, more like gigs over 2 and a half weeks. 5 gigs, on the other hand, last me all month with. I average 3.5 gigs and have to watch videos to use up the last 1.5 gig.


    It looks like I will be having to look elsewhere as I don't believe this will be resolved. And no, I'm not interested in the "new" plans where I have to spend more and hope that doesn't run out before the month is up.


    Big business sucks.


    To recap. Same habits, same pages, all else checked out, but device recording more gigs used than before.

      All replies

      • theartiszan

        Well depending on the device you may be getting higher quality video. Streaming Netflix on my s6 has more data usage than my s3 due to screen differences and higher quality.

        The LTE itself won't use data faster just allows to consume data at a faster rate. If you want to get an idea of what is actually using data on the phone I would suggest installing onovo count or 3g watchdog for reporting to see where it's going.

        • When sites and apps detect a stronger speed connection they typically revert to higher quality media which is larger in file size. Back on slower speeds we might access a site and decide halfway through loading that we wanted to go someplace else. The page wouldn't fully load. On LTE the page loads before you can change your mind.  It isn't that you WILL use more data it's that the same amount can be used faster. I myself have only the 2GB plan with Music Freedom (ads still load and count towards data on free music apps) and I have BingeOn enabled. 3 weeks into my cycle using an LG G2 with excellent signal in most all areas and I have used 650MBs with mixed video and browsing as well as GPS and other apps that sync data.

          • tepaan

            So I can't force 2g on my hotspot like it can be done with a smartphone, right? Even tho the smartphone can also be a hotspot, the hotspot can't be a smartphone with all its settings, just as I said, right?


            So nobody knows what could work for me, or people are trying to figure that one out?

              • tidbits

                I don't have a hotspot, but because the applications you are using won't adjust or give adjustments is the real problem. Like I said earlier even if I tethered my phone and left everything alone or even turned off LTE my TV for example refuses to stream content no lower than 720P.

                  • tepaan

                    The problem with that is what I explained above with the old device. The second I switched to the new I watched gigs tick away far faster. Too fast.


                    So basically no one has an answer. Too bad.

                      • tidbits

                        One problem you went from possibly 4mbps device to a 20mbps device. Also you probably went from a 720 display to a 1080 display. This affects you data as well.


                        For example those changes would make Netflix from using 300mb per video to 800mb per video as it would stream higher resolution. Also some games would download HD assets where when you had the 720 display it uses standard assets.


                        If you were on any other carrier you'd get the same results. I reread through this thread and noticed you went from a 4G(actually 3G separate discussion) to LTE.


                        Now with all that said some apps let you adjust these things, and some don't.

                          • tepaan

                            The old device states that it is a "4G Mobile Hotspot" "ZTE". Are you saying it is, in reality, 3g?  Is there any possibility of getting back to a 4mbps device? The only reason I bought the new is that I could no longer get on line. I was told when I called that the company had upgraded to 4g lte which would no longer transmit to my then current device, ("4G Mobile Hotspot) and I now had to buy the new device which would receive 4g LTE.


                            Since I don't watch movies, nor stream music, nor game, but visit websites for study purposes, such as permaculture, math, how would your observations apply there?


                            And, again, since there is no apparent way to resolve this, I can, and will, go elsewhere. But I would prefer not to. But if I have to, I do.


                            720 vs 1018: Are you talking smartphone? Or...?


                            What apps? Apps that apply to a smartphone, which I am not on?

                              • dragon1562

                                     First i want to get this out of the gate i get your frustrated but as i read your thread your coming off as very rude to people that just want to help you and i want to inform you as stated earlier that you switching carriers won't resolve the issue that you feel you have. For one thing if your using a computer you should invest in some form of home internet it is much much cheaper then using cellular data.

                                     Next lets tackle the fact that the amount of data you use is the same whether you do a task over 2g, 3g,or LTE so long as its the same file. The reason as many have mentioned before me that you may be consuming more data is because you have more bandwith available to be used. i'm going to give you a generic example to try and help you understand. Say you logged into youtube on your old 4mbps connection youtube by default(unless you changed it yourself) will more likely then not play at a 480p(standard def) resolution because thats what that kind of bandwith could handle without constant buffering but now that your on true LTE there is more available bandwith and you have a device that can handle it so it opts for the higher resolution.

                                     Just as a side note if you really feel the need you could test this yourself download the same exact file from say google drive or something once on 3g/4g and once over LTE the amount of data used would be identical the difference would be amount of time it took to fetch that data.

                                     Another thing you should know is that 4g or HSPA+ is like a cross breed between 3g and LTE it just has a better backhaul and few minor adjustments so its not really true 4g i hope i could of been helpful and please don't be foolish enough to switch because your just going to waste more of your money doing that.

                                  • tepaan

                                    I'm sorry you feel I was being rude.  As many discussion groups as I've been on I will have to realize the rudeness you seem to perceive is.....? 


                                    I asked, "Is there any possibility of getting back to a 4mbps device?"  I guess you are saying, "no" in your response.


                                    I asked, "Since I don't watch movies, nor stream music, nor game, but visit websites for study purposes, such as permaculture, math, how would your observations apply there?"


                                    You responded, "i'm going to give you a generic example to try and help you understand. Say you logged into youtube ...."

                                    I suppose you are trying to say the same reasons apply?


                                    I feel it was very rude of you, and anyone else, to make assumptions of what I mean without asking me, as here when you say,

                                    "i want to inform you as stated earlier that you switching carriers won't resolve the issue that you feel you have. For one thing if your using a computer you should invest in some form of home internet it is much much cheaper then using cellular data."


                                    I never stated my exact options nor intentions.



                                      • dragon1562

                                        Well i'm sorry for making assumptions but i can only respond and give you answers with the information that you have provided me. Can you tell me what other options you were considering? Also to clarify there is no way to get your old device back and to be honest it wouldn't matter i assure you. 

                                          • tepaan

                                            Hopefully T Mobile people are watching and decide to corner the market on those of us who couldn't care less about speed, gaming, videos, and such....without going to the other extreme. Nor live on smartphones.  LOL

                                            • tepaan


                                              "4mbps connection youtube ... will more likely then not play at a 480p(standard def) resolution because thats what that kind of bandwith could handle..."


                                              "...true LTE there is more available bandwith and you have a device that can handle it so it opts for the higher resolution."



                                              "...old device be honest it wouldn't matter i assure you."


                                              I'm trying to understand without being understood as rude. The former device made a difference ....but doesn't make a difference. smh

                                                • dragon1562

                                                  Real quick can you do me a favor of writing the new device in full i want to google search more about it because you should have the ability to limit what loads up. Also since your useing a pc to browse you should be able to have control on their as well. One other solution that i'm coming to is picking another plan with more data. If you could please tell me what your paying for in it's entirety and is it prepaid or postpaid account. Thank you for providing the info that i will need. To be clear I do wanna help you i just want to be able to tell you where to go so you can use the bare minimum on your data bucket.

                                                    • tmo_ryan

                                                      Hey all,


                                                      I'll start with a few pieces of info:


                                                      1) No staff here have access to customer accounts (I'm just the site admin with random interests in threads occasionally, the Community Managers have actual roles to participate) so we cannot provide any specifics. If you truly want to get to the bottom of this or think something has changed you'd need to speak with Care (calling 611 or the like) or T-Force (our social media support team) since they have the ability to look over account details and potentially open a ticket if something looks weird.


                                                      2) I'm guessing the device change was due to our network refarming of spectrum. Long story short, when we first launched 3G service we did it on our AWS (band 4) spectrum but now that we've moved to LTE as our primary data service on AWS we're using 3G on 1900mhz (Band 2). Newer devices support 3G and LTE on both, older devices don't.


                                                      3) No one here will be able to accurately troubleshoot this issue since we have no access to the computer nor the hotspot. There's a lot of speculation on what is happening or could be happening. While trying to be helpful it's likely counter productive.


                                                      4) Not sure, but potentially my question is "is the hotspot being used anywhere near other people or devices"? As in, not being used in the middle of a field with only the laptop within range and no one for hundreds of yards. Does the laptop have ANY applications that require software updates that are silently/automatically done while using the hotspot? Also, hotspots tend to share their signal via wifi and depending on how security is set up on it, someone could be leeching or another device could be finding it.


                                                      5) Just because there is a bigger pipe doesn't mean there is more data consumption if all other things are equal. That's like saying that you have one of those big sports coolers and you put a new nozzle on it but still filling up the same 20 oz bottle. While one might fill it faster, you're still using the same amount of water. Obviously if you are filling faster you have a better chance of splashing some water away or overfilling (in this example).


                                                      With all that out of the way, here's my thoughts...


                                                      About the only way I can think of to come close to really figuring this out is to have monitoring on both sides of the connect, both the computer and the hotspot. T-Mobile obviously provides the data details through My T-Mobile. For the PC, you'd want to use something like DU Meter by installing it and comparing the data that it shows to the numbers being shown via My T-Mobile. With this data in hand, along with specifics like "On Jan 5th, I connected my laptop to my hotspot around 6am and used it until 9am. I did not use it the rest of the day. Now, on January 7th I opened up DU meter and looked at Jan 5th and it shows 100.5MB of data was used...I didn't use any other wifi or connect to the internet otherwise. When I checked My T-Mobile it showed I used 135MB during the same time period with a data session at 2pm in addition to the active time I was using it".


                                                      Short of that level (or more) of specificity, everyone is just speculating which we're all free to do but it gets no one closer to understanding what is going on.


                                                      From a network/engineering perspective, the more granular and detailed you get the better a chance someone can actually sort it out...especially if you isolate multiple sessions. If they know to look at traffic between two fixed, highly specific AND recent, time periods they are able to use diagnostic tools to look at the systems that drive the information you see in My T-Mobile to see if the numbers the actual network is showing are the numbers being reflected accurately.


                                                      So those are my thoughts.



                                                        • tepaan

                                                          Thank you, thank you, thank you! So much. Yes. Now we're getting somewhere. (I did get some helpful pointers from the young 'uns along with the frustration. LOL  )


                                                          While I'm on a PC I am mobile as in I could move at any moment so being tied to a plan that could charge me regardless of whether I was able to still use the contract at another residence or not doesn't make too much sense to me.


                                                          1. I have researched and set controls on the PC including setting it for "metered account" so Windows can't download and install without either my knowledge or consent.


                                                          2. Former device (which I wish I could rehook up) is TMobile 4G Mobile Hotspot ZTE. New device is TMobile 4GLTE ZTE. I was told, as I stated somewhere above, that I found myself offline, Tmobile rep said service had been upgraded to 4GLTE so my old device no longer received....That happened about Aug. I noticed that I was going through gigs really fast but unable to do anything about it till recently.


                                                          3. When I wanted to put a password on the new device I was told that wasn't necessary as it was highly unlikely others could tap into it for a couple of reasons.  I am the only one of two people in the house on PC.


                                                          4. I go to some webpages then check Tmobile meter. Sometimes its good, comparatively, other times I'm close to crying with helplessness.  What I understand so far is that if pages have videos those videos download regardless of "ask first", noscript, adblock, flashblock safeguards I have installed. "Ask to play".  In the last couple of days I disabled any video players on PC including "primetime content decryption....".


                                                          I have been informed by the young 'uns, and the web, that that doesn't matter as HTML5 and LTE download videos anyway whether I click on them to play or not. Frustrated eye, helpless feeling eye roll on that one. 


                                                          With 5 gigs I averaged with normal use to use 3 1/2 gigs a month then would watch about 3 45 min programs, or similar to use the rest up.


                                                          I will try bitmeter and see if that matches TMobile meter. I can't afford the other.


                                                          Again thank you both, not to say the young 'uns didn't give a couple of pointers.

                                                            • tepaan

                                                              I wanna go back to my old device.

                                                              • tmo_ryan

                                                                du meter should be free. I mean I've used it for like 18 years off and on and always used it for free (I think it is 'donationware' like it'll ask you to donate but doesn't lock you out if you dont')...anywho yeah any of those types where they basically keep a log of traffic work just fine.


                                                                The reason I asked about other folks around is that I know I use my tethering sometimes in places with literally no one around and other times I'm using it in places like airports, hotels, etc where "no security" could prove to be problematic. You mentioned course work or studying type of videos so wasn't sure if you were potentially using it in a library or something like that where someone else could leech data from it (also wasn't sure if we were talking tens or hundreds of megabytes difference between assumed and actual usage).


                                                                regarding the device, it does sound like our spectrum refarm caught you. It's sorta like when I go golfing. I used to be able to wear my metal spiked shoes everywhere but all of a sudden there were "upgrades" at some courses and I needed to get new shoes with those softer plastic thingies which at first stunk because I had to shell out more money but eventually I was like "well I can wear these soft plastic thingered ones on both courses" and like right now I just realized that I once had metal spiked shoes in the first place.


                                                                Technology moves fast but LTE should be with us for at least the next 5-7 years (LTE = Long Term Evolution) but we'll be adding new spectrum as time goes on but for now we shouldn't see any changes accept for more speed being possible (by adding more spectrum/frequencies) not "different" like happened in August. 

                                                                  • tepaan

                                                                    When I checked dumeter it said, "30 day trial". I'll check again. Sometimes the free version is hiding somewhere.


                                                                    Data usage varies. Last couple of days it has been moderate and acceptable. Tens of megabytes. Then seemingly out of the blue it will go into varying hundreds. I downloaded something that was 530 mb, give or take, but the TMobile "connect me" page registered another hundred or two. Not cool. The initial download of that program, as well as a couple of others, will save any mb used over time in going to it online. Tho I'm not sure if that was much of an issue.



                                                                    The former was fast enough for me. Others may need increased speed, but I'm not to the point where I need something received by the other party before I've even sent it. LOL (Just making a point in case that wasn't readily discernible.   )


                                                                    The fact that the monthly plan changed from 30 a month for 3 gigs, to 35 a month for 6 gigs, with similar increases up the scale, seems to be quite clear others are also seeing their gigs slipping away faster than normal. Given my past experience, both pre- and post- I estimate the 6 gigs will equal, or be less, than it was with 3 gigs, but I will pay more.


                                                                    Meanwhile I keep researching. I may find stopping IP Helper of svchost.exe to be beneficial.


                                                                    Thanks again to both you and smplyunprdctble, and the others.

                                                                      • tepaan

                                                                        Well I see TMobile decided 6 gigs for 35 was too good of a deal and stopped that. Lasted only a couple of days or so. smh.

                                                                        • tmo_ryan

                                                                          From a networking perspective a 530MB file is not actually 530MB of data traffic when it's download off the internet due to the fact the computer and the server need to actually talk back and forth. I'm going to explain this in case this is new info to you (sorry if you know this already).


                                                                          When you're on the internet there is traffic transmitting both to and from your computer. In simple terms, when you go to a website the browser sends off a request in packets. The first one says something like "hey Ryan wants to go to this site, where can I find out". The system figures out where to go and then the two sides talk between them which includes sending and receiving data back and forth. Now when you're downloading something the same still happens. Every packet is requested, every packet is confirmed when received. This causes overhead. Sometimes there is also something going on where a packet isn't received so it has to be resent (on mobile this can happen even more frequently than if you're plugged directly in to a network).


                                                                          I took a quick screenshot of my meter on my computer while downloading something to demonstrate this. Most of the monitoring apps have a "stopwatch" function that you could use as well which let's you start a timer that will show you all the data going in and out just between those points (so you'd start it right when you click the download button). bandwidth.JPG

                                                                          The data you use is calculated off all the traffic, not just the downlink side (Otherwise, I could download nothing but be constantly pushing hundreds of GB of data out and get charged nothing).


                                                                          Regarding the increase in bucket size compared to price, the costs of sending the same amount of data gets cheaper over time as technlogy improves. We I first got a cable modem over a decade ago I'd get 3Mbps for 110 bucks. Now depending on where I live I can get 1Gbps (so 333 times faster) for 70 bucks. Likewise, as competition goes up, you'll find the price of a GB will continue to go down as mobile companies get more capacity (higher speed internet connections to the site and additional spectrum to share with customers). As people consume more, there's pressure on how much they're willing/able to pay so one business will go "hey we'll give you 1GB more than they will." Then the other company ups it again and the consumer from both companies wins. So in short, us giving more data is because people's habits are generally increasing (also why we came out with Binge On to help people get more from their streaming video habits).

                                              • smplyunprdctble

                                                One thing that I may be able to add here.


                                                Different devices CAN use different amounts of data, depending on how they're set up.


                                                My personal example is I went from the MyTouch3G to the HTC Sensation [I think that's the upgrade point?], my data usage jumped enormously.  Like from 400MB/mo to 75MB/day (which would translate to 2.25GB/mo).  That concerned me greatly as I knew I wasn't really doing much on the phone (Seriously, I wasn't.  I didn't watch the Youtubes, I barely touched Facebook, and all that).


                                                After doing some digging (which was difficult without appropriate tools back then), I learned it was HTC's "Social Media Contacts" connectors that were eating data.  The best I could tell is it was constantly pinging Facebook & Twitter for status updates and photo updates.  I disabled Facebook & Twitter contacts and my data usage went back down to it's pre-upgrade amounts.



                                                It's VERY difficult to give a blanket answer as to why data usage increases.  In my case, it was a bug in HTC's software.  Others may not realize that a better device will tend to open larger pipes for video display (the "Video" answer).  It could also be apps doing initial downloads and/or more updates (When I get a new device, I get a HUGE ding on data with all the downloads).  That's why tools were created (and added to devices, although the internal tracking isn't ALWAYS 100% it seems) to help people track down what is using their data.  That's your personal best bet to figure out what data is being used.