Windows Vista forum

Question

Wi Fi affects computer data usage?

by jo ann olisky / May 30, 2013 2:01 AM PDT

When I play games, watch netflix, etc on my tv, tablet or phone thru WiFi, does this increase my internet "data usage"?

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All Answers

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Answer
Yes.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 30, 2013 2:12 AM PDT

Your question may need more detail. Some folk are worried about the data usage on the Cellular link but if you move data over WiFi it should not increase your cellular data use.
Bob

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Answer
Depends
by Jimmy Greystone / May 30, 2013 3:40 AM PDT

As Bob says, it depends on which data set you're talking about.

Cellular data: No
ISP data: Yes

So no worries about going over the ridiculously small 2GB or whatever data plans for your cell phone, but if you have AT&T's DSL service, for example, with it's equally insulting 150GB cap, it will count against that.

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Answer
Basically yes
by 3rdalbum / June 14, 2013 1:44 PM PDT

When you watch Netflix, your computer/tv/tablet needs to get the video from the Netflix server, on the Internet. This counts toward your data use. If you have a video file sitting on your computer and you merely stream it to your TV, this doesn't count toward data use because none of the data is going onto the internet.

If you are playing online games, those games communicate over the Internet, so it counts toward your data use. If, however, you're playing a game that connects directly to somebody on the same wifi network as you (for instance, you're playing against someone in your own house ONLY) then probably no data will go to the Internet and it won't count toward your data use.

Anything that sends or retrieves data from the internet will count toward your data usage.

You can think of it like your water meter, on your property. You are only charged for the water that enters your property through the water meter. If you fill up a bucket of water and transfer it into another bucket, that water doesn't go through your water meter and you don't get charged for transferring that water - only for when the water initially entered your property.

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