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[iPhone] Keep track of your monthly data usage with DataMan

Posted By Brett On September 28, 2012 @ 12:15 AM In iOS | No Comments

[1]Have you ever found yourself coming way tot close to your data plan limit? Have already gone over the limit a couple times? With companies expanding their 4G LTE coverage across the United States, many wireless companies have been trying to phase out unlimited data plans. As a result, having the ability to keep track of your data usage is becoming increasingly important. For any users who have experienced overages, we understand how much hurt it can do to your wallet. DataMan – Real Time Data Usage Manager is an iOS app that will help you prevent such scenarios.

What is it and what does it do

Main Functionality

DataMan will help you keep track of your iPhone data use.

Pros

  • Tracks your data usage
  • Tracks your WiFi usage
  • Doesn’t use GPS
  • Monitors the percentage of your data usage versus your actual data plan
  • Shows both download and upload usage
  • Keeps history of your data usage
  • Keeps track of your billing cycle
  • Shows alerts for up to 4 data threshold percentages

Cons

  • Questions about ability of app to work in the background

Discussion

DataMan can be quite a valuable utility for iPhone users. Data plan overage charges are not where you want to spend your money, as they can be extremely costly. DataMan provides the ability to keep track of your data usage, so you never have to worry. The app, as a bonus, even keeps track of your Wi-Fi usage, so you know how much total online usage you amass per month. Although there is some skepticism about this and all data usage apps, please realize that the usage values are completely accurate as they come directly from iOS themselves.

The first thing you want to set in DataMan is the last day of your billing cycle (from the current time) and your current monthly data allowance. This will allow the app to keep track of your data usage month-by-month and then reset the data counter to zero when the new billing cycle occurs. The billing cycle timeline also helps DataMan keep track of your usage as a percentage of the total data allowed on the main “Current Usage” screen.

Speaking of the “Current Usage” screen, this is where the important information is displayed. You will see your total data usage (i.e. 3G, 4G, etc), as well as your total Wi-Fi usage. Both are quite conveniently separated into download and upload amounts, so you get a good idea of where all of your usage is coming from. The app also keeps a detailed history log of your usage for each month’s billing cycle, which is quite a useful feature.

Where the problem lies in this app is with the usage threshold alert amounts that DataMan provides. You are able to set 4 options for values of total data usage that you want to be warned about, so that you are alerted along the way of your use. So for example, I chose 50%, meaning that the app would alert me when I have used 1 GB of my 2GB data plan. Apparently though, no iOS app is aloud to run in the background longer than 10 minutes unless it is a legitimate VOIP client, media player, or navigational app. DataMan does not fit in either of those categories, so it does not have the ability to run in the background to alert you in real-time. Is that a big deal? Not really, as long as you know that the only way to get threshold alerts is to open the app first. I just appreciate the data usage values, so I don’t mind, but others might not want to pay the $1 unless they are getting real-time alerts.

Conclusion and download link

DataMan is an excellent tool for monitoring your month-to-month data and Wi-Fi usage. Just please be aware that the only way to get real-time alerts of threshold data the majority of the time is to enter the app itself. So you could go over the threshold, but not get an alert until you enter the app the next time.

Price: $0.99

[2]Version reviewed: 3.4

Download size: 0.5 MB

Requires: iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad; iOS 4.0 and up

DataMan – Real Time Data Usage Manager on iTunes [3]


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[3] DataMan – Real Time Data Usage Manager on iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dataman-real-time-data-usage/id404513413

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