How much data does Uber use?


As the OG ridesharing app, Uber essentially changed the motoring landscape in Australia and looks set to stay competitive in a market that has plenty of wheels to choose from. Despite plenty of ridesharing apps and services merging into the scene over the past few years, Uber is still pretty much king of the road. But how much data is the Uber app really using? Do you enough data to catch that ride? With plenty of features and live-tracking capabilities, it stands to reason that your ride could also be costing you in the phone plan department. Find out what you need to know below.

How much data does Uber use?

Uber does not provide any official figures for the app’s mobile data usage, with few online estimates available. As a result, we decided to test it ourselves. Via the Data Tracking feature, we found that over a period of one day – which included a 20 minute trip – Uber used about 67MB of data. Considering that Uber constantly uses data for location tracking, this means that a 20 minute Uber ride itself will use less data. But if you’re catching a ride every day, those megabytes (not to mention the cost of riding) is really going to add up.

To give you a better idea about map and location data usage, check out the estimated figures for both Google Maps and Apple Maps in the table below.

App 1 Minute of Use 5 Minutes of Use 10 Minutes of Use 20 Minutes of Use
Apple Maps 0.09MB 0.45MB 0.9MB 1.8MB
Google Maps 0.6MB 3MB 6MB 12MB

Estimates only.

For drivers, Uber says that data usage on your personal device is unlikely to exceed more than 3GB per month, although it doesn’t state how often the app is used in this scenario. Given that 3GB isn’t much data for a driver to be using, it stands to reason that the odd road trip for a passenger won’t consume too much.

How do I reduce my Uber data usage?

While there is no way to limit the data usage of the Uber app itself, both iOS and Android provide a low data usage function you can enable to limit the amount of data used by your apps in the background.

The ‘Low Data Mode’ function for iOS restricts your device’s background activity so you use less mobile data. By switching Low Data Mode on, the Uber app will only track your location while the app is open, rather than collecting data on your whereabouts at all times.

The Android equivalent, ‘Data Saver’, can be turned on or off in your Settings app by selecting ‘Network & Internet’, then ‘Data Saver’. When Data Saver is enabled on your device, you’ll see the Data Saver icon at the top of your screen and a notification at the top of your Settings app.

How can I check the data usage of Uber?

Ordering Uber app

You can check how much mobile data your Uber app is using on your iPhone by selecting ‘Mobile’ in the Settings App. You can then scroll through a list of your apps; the number beside each tells you how much data is being used. You can turn off the app’s mobile data usage completely by switching the toggle next to Uber off.

To check the mobile data usage on your Android, select ‘Network & Internet’ then ‘Data Usage’ in the phone’s Settings app. Under ‘Mobile’, you can see the total data you use, while selecting ‘Mobile Data Usage’ gives you a breakdown of how much data each app uses below the graph.

Can you use Uber without mobile data?

Uber requires an internet connection, meaning you need to either use mobile data or be connected to a Wi-Fi network to order or schedule a ride. Once you have been picked up, however, you don’t need an internet connection to complete a trip, unless you want to use the tracking function or give your driving a rating.

What’s the deal with Uber and data usage?

With no figures on data usage available, it can be a bumpy ride using Uber if you’re worried about your data limit. However, with data tracking capabilities on smartphones, if you’re really worried about your data usage, you could always investigate yourself to ensure you don’t make a wrong turn. Alternatively, you can always turn on data saving features, or opt for an unlimited data plan to ensure you don’t meet with any roadblocks.

Photo credits: Jirapong Manustrong/, dennizn/

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