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Data usage question?

Discussion in 'Gator Bytes' started by gatorknights, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. gatorknights

    gatorknights GC Hall of Fame

    Apr 8, 2007
    Gainesville, FL
    So I get an email from Cox saying I've almost used up all my data. We recently bought a TCL Roku TV (roku is built-in) that has wifi. Will that device use data when turned off or I'm using the antenna? Our other tv has a roku device plugged in, will it use data when not in use?

    I realize it is Cox, so they may be jerking me to upgrade to unlimited, but I wanted to check first.

    Any ideas?
  2. LakeGator

    LakeGator Mostly Harmless Moderator VIP Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    Your TCL smart television most certainly uses the network on a regular but typically low volume basis. All smart televisions are making connections to check for update to their software which should amount to a VERY SMALL amount of data. The actual updates is typically downloaded while the television is not in use so that could add a relatively small amount of data usage. My SWAG would be maybe 500 mb for a complete update. Your plug in Toku probably uses a small of data

    A more insidious culprit can be tracking applications running on your smart television as described in this article, How Smart TVs in Millions of U.S. Homes Track More Than What’s On Tonight. The article is focused on software from Samba, which is on many brands including TCL, but there are other ‘enhancers’ that are really spying on their victims which some folks seem to think is a great feature. While I doubt these and eating a significant amount of your data but they may. The way Samba works, for instance is to actually watch your television screen looking for picture pieces that match specific objects so it COULD be moving a lot of data. Given that the companies writing the software don’t care about invading your privacy I doubt they care about how much data they pump.

    I know nothing about Cox but assume they have a way for you to check your data usage. It might help you get an idea if you tracked it fairly often during a period of various activities and inactivity. This might help yu determine when and how the data is being generated.

    Hope this helps.
  3. jamiegator

    jamiegator Disciple of Yoda VIP Member

    Apr 3, 2007
    Cox does have tools to keep track of your downloads per day/week/month. I got tired of hitting the download ceiling with Cox so I lowered from the top tier to the middle tier to save some money and then added unlimited for an additional $50 per month. It's not cheap but I no longer worry about caps.
  4. anstro76

    anstro76 GC Hall of Fame

    Feb 14, 2008
    I had to go into the settings on my TCL Roku TV in order to make it do a full power off. The factory setting is usually just a soft sleep mode so that your TV will boot quicker. I did it for electric bill reasons but I'm sure it pulls data too since all of your channels are still technically running.
  5. solari

    solari GC Janitor VIP Member GC Staff

    If you're streaming shows through the Roku then it will use quite a bit of data... You should be able to adjust the video streaming quality of it and see if it makes a difference and you may end up saving data.

    • Agree Agree x 1