How is it possible to accrue data charges on wifi and asleep?
Frances1230
Enthusiast - Level 1

I'm not very happy with what's going on right now.  My family of 3 shares a data plan of 8GB.  I use under 1G, my husband <1G-1.5G and my son uses a ton so I decided to start looking into when/how much data is being used.  In the previous billing cycle we went over by .009 on the final day of the billing cycle so what's the point to pay $10 for 2G and then not be able to change it back, therefore I took the stupid $15 overage charge for literally nothing.  Anyway, I began to look through the time stamps and data usage per phone and it's pretty fishy. I'm being charged data at 4:06am, 10:06am, 4:06pm and so on.  I have an iphone5, my husband has an iphone6 and my son an iphone 6+.  Spoke with a rep tonight who claimed it may be due to my wifi losing connectivity and auto updating while connected to the LTE.  That's a load.  My whole family switched to Verizon because we couldn't ever get a good signal where we live with AT&T.  My husband finally was forced to try a different company due to work and having to have a reliable network where we live. Not one dropped call, not one issue with wifi-Verizon was actually the miracle mobile provider I never knew existed.  I waited a few months to make sure that it wasn't too good to be true and at once dropped AT&T totally and switched my son and my phone to Verizon as well.  Having a teenager I knew we needed to probably have more data to be on the safe side but they can't seem to tell me how his data is being used and from 4/2 to today (4/14) he has used over 4G of data according to them.  I pull up the dates and times and know for a fact that he was connected to home wifi for 1.6G+ and at his school wifi for another 1.6G+ and only 1.2G+ could have possibly been used off wifi.  And I also see that there are massive amounts of complaints regarding this same type of sham.  Not to mention I had added Family Base to be able to set limits on the data my son uses. But apparently since he's able to access the MyVerizon account from his phone (albeit he isn't an authorized user on the Family Base plan) he is able to go in and change any parameters I had set up.  So tonight I go in and remove this feature from our account and now 30 minutes later I get a "Welcome to Verizon Family Base" text.  WTH is going on??? I want real answers now or I will be looking into what others have done regarding this type of abuse.  I had high hopes that this was going to be an honest, reliable network I could trust but this data business is insanely bogus.  I'd like to hear back from someone regarding getting this researched and resolved.  I don't want to feel discontent about something that has been going good so far.  But I don't really feel like I should have to turn off all cellular data and close all open apps when I'm on wifi in order to keep from having data charged inappropriately.  Thanks for your help and prompt resolution to my concern.

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38 Replies
mhb1954
Enthusiast - Level 2

Hi, Michelle,

Thanks!... But I already know how to do this. This doesn't address my question.

I'm saying 1. that I'm being charged now for data overages because I'm going over my limit of 2GB, and I see downloads occurring when I'm home, when the phone should be only using WiFi. In addition to that, I just feel like my data usage has escalated for no reason. I use the same apps I've had on the phone since early last year when I got it. I'm not a big app shopper/buyer/tryer.

I want my bill adjusted and I would like some sort of fix put in place, either on my phone or on the Verizon system.

You can see many people entering similar comments about having data downloads occur when you're well within range of your home's WiFi. Something isn't right.

Thanks,Mark

vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

mhb1954, I too would be concerned over data usage increasing. Especially when it feels like the usage habit is normal and has not increased. By chance, have you tried using the Data Utilization service feature? It can help pinpoin what services/apps are using the most Cellular Data, and causing the overages to take place. Please review this service feature through this link:


http://vz.to/1DxudqN




NicandroN_VZW


Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response.


This ensures others can benefit from our conversation.


Thanks in advance for your help with this!

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Toyota4x4van
Contributor - Level 3

Please stop suggesting that we go to the "data utilization tool" to clarify why our data use has suddenly skyrocketed. The tool is absolutely worthless; it does not tell us which apps are using data, only which "categories" the data use falls into, and the examples shown for those categories do not really match any apps or websites that I use.  The data utilization tool is nothing more than an additional smokescreen to avoid addressing the real issue, which is unexplained skyrocketing data use AND data use while on WiFi.  I'd also like you to explain why my "SmartActions" app uses background data every month, even though it is set to "disable background data" AND the entire app is DISABLED!

vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

I can understand your viewpoint in that the general data associated with the data utilization tool can appear a bit generic. Toyota4x4van, we can help shed some light on this for you. For instance using my Data Usage info from my S6 Edge as an example, I was able to clarify that some music apps are classiyfing under Web & Apps, alongside under Video. It may depend on what the apps capabilities are as well. For instance I use Tidal on a trial basis, and Google Music personaly. For me Google Music is classifying under Video, and Tidal appears to be under Web and Apps.I was able to break it down by reviewing my usage and comparing with how it displays on my utilization tool. These are the only two apps I use on daily basis outside of Chrome and Youtube.


Is there a large discrepency in the type of apps you are using with how it is reported? What apps are used and how do you think they are classifiying? We can submit feedback to make sure app type is properly classified, since we do not have direct app info in the utilization tool.




NicandroN_VZW Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

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Toyota4x4van
Contributor - Level 3

Please stop with the continual patronizing smokescreen.  While the Data Utilization Tool may be helpful if we use just a few apps, it is worthless for those of us who use more than a few apps.  The categories are too generic, and as you have admitted, some apps are classifying under categories that don’t really make sense (Google Music under Video?).  If there are many apps that we use, it is impossible to figure out which “categories” any specific app is being classified under.

On Verizon’s website, they have a “Data Calculator” that shows how much data  typical activities are likely to use.  It is so far off (intentionally?) that it is a joke; it should be corrected or removed from the website.  It claims that 4G video should burn about 350MB per hour.  Really?  I can burn through 1GB or more in just 15-30 minutes of video.  It claims that Navigation uses 5MB per hour. Really?  Using navigation on my phone can easily eat up more than 50X that amount.

I have never claimed that the data shown on my phone differs from the data shown on MyVerizon online (other than the one instance of a random 1.6GB charge in 1 hour, while on WiFi, that never showed up on my phone!).  What I am claiming is that I don’t believe that what my phone AND Verizon is reporting is accurate.  I have had the same phone for nearly 3 years now.  Up until 1 year ago, I was able to get by with a 8GB plan (family plan, 4 lines) with no issues and never close to overages.  I am now at 16GB, and am constantly near that limit, having to curtail use.  The only changes in the past 12 months in our usage habits have been to really cut back, cut down, and scramble to try to minimize data use! I am constantly checking to verify that we are on WiFi at home.  I turn off cellular data when possible.  In other words, our data usage should have decreased from 1 year ago. And yet we are using more than double what we were consistently using just 1 year ago?  Bull. 

narntek
Contributor - Level 3

I too, have been having the same problem, which so far has been remedied by the 5 GB plan that I'm on now, coming from the 2G I've used for the past 2 years. I added an iPhone 4S originally to my account, when it broke I got an iPhone 5S. Almost immediately my data skyrocketed over 10G's each month. I was up-to-the-neck in overage fees, which luckily I was refunded. After a year with that phone, I upgraded to the Samsung S5 which broke when I dropped it. My data was fine on that phone. When I switched back to my 5S, it again did the same thing with data. I was told many different times, it was a switch between a 3G/4G phone which at the time made sense for the first explanation (only a little, because the 4S was a 3G and the 5S was a 4G phone), but it doesn't really make sense because both were on WIFI with cellular data turned off, apps "killed" and nothing to keep from "running" up data. Yet overages galore once more.

I just upgraded again, and this time, sold my old phone before the new phone is due to come in. I reconnected my old LG Ally phone, and I hope to god that this data issue doesn't happen again, because it's really infuriating that a company thinks they can make up excuses how the phone itself is faulty, and how they aren't to blame. I sent my diagnostics information over to the representative and troubleshooter last month when I was presented with more overages. His answer was that my phone was showing low numbers of data usage, not adding up to what the billing statement said.

I would like for someone higher up in VZW to look into this. I work in IT and majored in computers/technology in school. I have done all of the (albeit unnecessarily done) troubleshooting that you have suggested to do, and have found nothing to suggest my phone is using data. When I asked for times of data usage, the intervals (I understand that they would not be to the T) were around hours while I'd be out on the road driving around, traveling for business.

As I've remedied the issue, I wouldn't like assistance in my part, rather to get the information out is all I seek. If this happens again, I will be contacting tech support and see what can be done.

vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep
Frances1230,

I certainly understand your concern to see data showing up at strange times of day. I know I would be too. Let's clear this up and make sure this is solved for you.

The times you see on My Verizon aren't necessarily when that data is used, they are when the data reports to our towers. The maximum session is 6 hours which is why you see a lot of those times every 6 hours, at 4:06, then at 10:06, then again at 4:06. There are things that can interrupt that and cause it to report more regularly, but if you see a 4:06 and the next event is 10:06, the 10:06 data is what was used during that 6 hour period.

How large are these late night sessions you're seeing? Even when on wi-fi if mobile data is on, there will be small amounts of usage. The phone will check the network to make sure the connection is still good. Certain apps may do small updates which don't work on wi-fi. The router you're connected to may have latency and disconnect. When usage starts most of the time that should reconnect but there may be a few seconds before it does and a small amount of data may be used. Those are just possibilities, many things could do this, but if you're on wi-fi the usage should be small.

I also wanted to address one last concern and that was with adding more data. We do provide the option to add 2GBs more for $10.00 in most cases. This is done by moving the plan up. The higher plan is often cheaper than paying overage. As long as your old plan is still offered as an option, you would be able to go back to your old plan the very next bill cycle if you like. You can change your plan as often as you like.

AndrewT_VZW
Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport
If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!
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Weth
Legend

Times are not when data is used, but the time when tower reports to Verizon's servers. 

KIds use use a ton of data, even when they claim they aren't. 

Change your password on My Verizon, or you may be wondering how he got a new phone. 

Plug-in his phone overnight, that prevents wifi going to sleep. 

CLose se all apps on his phone. 

social media apps use a lot of data. 

check what apps on his phone are using all the data.

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Frances1230
Enthusiast - Level 1

I don't have a need to change the password since I want him to be able to see his usage and I have no need to be worried that he would abuse that by getting a new phone (as you inferred) All of our phones are plugged in at night and he and my husband are OCD about closing all their apps. If anyone were to get charged for data by having apps remaining open in the background it would be me and I use the least amount of data according to the breakdown.  I am unable to tell or how to tell what apps are using all the data.  Where we looked on his phone we could not get the numbers to add up, they weren't even close. The time is still an issue.  Even if that is when the tower is reporting to Verizon, those times are suspicious and surely it's reporting within a 12 hour time frame in which we would be on our wifi network.  It doesn't add up whatsoever and I still feel that something is not right.  I'm doing my own test using my phone for this "wifi failing" excuse I was given.

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Weth
Legend

He should have his own account to see usage, but where he can't change things.  He may be the absolute sweetest son ever, but it is a risk to let him use a master account.  We have seen things on this forum where it has ended up bad.  Do you give him access to your bank accounts and credit cards?  

I've investigated several family and friend data use situations.  Most of the time it is only the kids having the "impossible" data use.  Each time it came down to real data use.   Video was most common, and usually after going from 3G phone to LTE phone and not realizing that easily quadruples data use.  Next up was social media video and picture exchanges.  Finally some were switching to cellular when blocks on wifi were put in to restrict sites or times.  They figured out they could go to the sites bypassing the parental restrictions By using cellular.   This was not admitted until evidence shown.  One was actually not the kids fault, and an app kept trying to download For some reason. 

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imc2
Enthusiast - Level 2

Weth- question: you indicated in your post that "...usually after going from 3G phone to LTE phone and not realizing that easily quadruples data use."...does LTE REALLY quadruple data use? I knew it was higher, but didn't think it was THAT much! I'm just trying to understand this issue more.

Thanks

Weth
Legend

imc2 wrote:

Weth- question: you indicated in your post that "...usually after going from 3G phone to LTE phone and not realizing that easily quadruples data use."...does LTE REALLY quadruple data use? I knew it was higher, but didn't think it was THAT much! I'm just trying to understand this issue more.

Thanks

The average from information from the carriers themselves is a 2.5 times increase in data usage going from 3G to 4G.  if someone uses lots of video, 4x is certainly not hard to do, and I have seen it a few times.

4G LTE will use twice as much data as 3G, plan ahead

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DBVJB
Enthusiast - Level 1

I have been reading post after post of people all saying the same thing.  Data skyrockets while on wifi. My son's phone went from 70% to 90% over night and he wasn't on it at all!!!  How does this happen?  The data utilization chart shows the majority of his usage is in web or searches but he had all apps closed last night so how did it jump so high like that?  None of these explanations make any logical sense and NONE of them that I have found correct the issue.  How do we correct this??  There must be way besides disconnecting the service completely.  Last night we shut the cellular data OFF on his phone.  So how on earth can it be using data when cellular data is OFF??

vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

We want the frsutration to end here, DBVJB! What type of phone is your son using? What are main apps showing in the device data usage setting? Consider there is the possibility of delayed usage that may appear in billing system from prior sessions.



YaleK_VZW

Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

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DBVJB
Enthusiast - Level 1

Hi there. He is using iPhone 5s and we have turned off Bluetooth, location settings, and anything we could find that might always run in the background. The apps he is using are the same ones for the most part that I use on my iPhone 6 & my data is skyrocketing. He closes all apps when not in use. What else can cause this to happen? Give me something to look for it change. We simply cannot afford this bill to keep getting higher. Thank you for your time & assistance.

Jill

Sent from my iPhone

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vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep

I appreciate the additional details provided DBVJB. Do you also ensure when using applications on your phone that they are closed? We also offer a tool online called data utilization. This will help to determine what exactly is causing the increase on the phone. For more information regarding our data utilization tool click, http://vz.to/1CtC3po



Thank You,

MichelleS_VZW Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!

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jwiedow
Enthusiast - Level 1

It is 3 in the morning and while I am sending this I keep getting updates that I am at 75, 90 and now 100% of my usage in the last hour. We are backing up to the cloud but on WiFi.

I have had 4GB for years and never used that amount. Bought a new turbo tonight and they upgraded me to 6GB and suddenly I have used all 6GB in 6 days?

I bought the new phone because my old one would lock up trying to access the internet so my usage was nothing before today. How is this even close to possible?

Now it says I have used up my 1GB over since I started typing. What the heck??

vzw_customer_support
Customer Service Rep
Hi Jwiedow,

Congrats on your new Turbo! We know that data overages are no good, and want you to be on the best plan for your usage. Smartphones now have the ability to show you what applications used the billed data on the device. Go to settings>data usage>select the current bill cycle. Review the list to see which applications have the highest GB/MB. You can change your plan at anytime with no contract extension with VZW http://vz.to/1aCnTVT . What device did you have prior to the Turbo?


PamelaF_VZW
Follow us on Twitter @VZWSupport
If my response answered your question please click the �Correct Answer� button under my response. This ensures others can benefit from our conversation. Thanks in advance for your help with this!!
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