The Average Aussie Uses 650MB Of Data On Their Phone Every Month

The Average Aussie Uses 650MB Of Data On Their Phone Every Month

New figures from the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) show that the average Australian uses 650MB of data each month. That serves as a reminder that if your mobile plan offers less than 1GB, you’re likely to end up paying too much.

Phones picture from Shutterstock

According to ACMA’s annual Communications Report, in the three months ending June 2014, the average mobile phone user downloaded 1.9GB of data. That works out at just under 650MB a month, and is up 97 per cent on the previous year.

Side note: that doesn’t mean, as we sometimes hear foolishly suggested, that wired broadband is dead. Over the same three month period, the average download for home broadband users was 155GB, up 53 per cent on the year before.

There are plenty of plans which include more than 1GB of data without paying a fortune; check out our recommendations for the best prepaid plans on each network.


  • With this average though, does it include people who don’t use their connection at all but have access?

  • Everyone I know switches their phone to wifi when they can. I simply don’t download apps on my mobile data. You can easily go through your gig of data otherwise. I wonder though, how much of that average is people doing the mundane. Updating apps and so forth.

    I did recently get a good deal and have 2.5 gig a month as opposed to 1 gig before.

    I am currently trying to get out of old habits and seeing what my usage of what I want would be. In the past i’d be anywhere from 350-700 most months. That literally was not downloading apps (wifi), just general stuff like e-mails, facebook and basic app usage. Rarely download an app on data or youtube or anything intensive.

    With the extra though, I will watching youtube on the train and while I am keeping an eye on data, it’s amazing how much extra use I get out of my phone and having more data actually brings.

  • I currently have 1.5GB allowance and normally come very close to my limit each month. 1.5GB allows 50mb a day which isn’t much. For me that is normally chewed up by social network use on public transport and Ingress. I also do occasionally receive video calls via Hangouts and they can very quickly chew through the data.

    • Yeah, video calls would be somewhere many people could easily chew threw their allowance without really noticing it.

  • Been using nearly 3gb of data nearly every month lol, mainly due to the fact that my telstra cable modem has been paying up for the duration.

  • I guess these people haven’t heard of Spotify, or TuneIn Radio, or have a tablet.
    I use Optus and share my phone’s data with an iPad, and boy does it disappear fast!

  • 650MB < 1GB, so if you’re paying for 1GB and only using 650MB you’re paying too much.

    In fact, the optimal amount of data to pay for is exactly the same as the amount you use. Seems pretty obvious? Pay for 1GB, and if you use very close to that then you’re getting your money’s worth.

  • Wow, 650meg month sounds pretty low, to me at least. I use over 3gig a month but then my unit is on a rim and I can’t get adsl so my phone bares the weight of my indulgence.

  • I would like to see the full details of the methodology and calculations ACMA used to reach this particular number.

    650MB a month sounds ridiculously low to me! This is based on my own personal experience as well as what we hear from our readers.

    Speaking for myself, I have access to reliable and fast ADSL2+ Broadband at home and I always switch my phone to it whenever I’m there. I also try to use any free wifi I can get at cafes, restaurants and shopping centres.

    This means I use my data only when I commute or just out on the street and I hardly ever watch videos or stream music using my data connection.

    I also use the Opera Max VPN to further reduce my data use

    Even with this very prudent and efficient use of my data allowance (I think so at least 😉 ), I go through about 1.5gb a month which is more than twice the figure stated by ACMA.

    I would love to see anyone who is actually using ACMA’s stated monthly ‘average’ reply to this comment.

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