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How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

Cameron Summerson is ex-Editor-in-Chief of Review Geek and served as an Editorial Advisor for How-To Geek and LifeSavvy. He covered technology for a decade and wrote over 4,000 articles and hundreds of product reviews in that time. He’s been published in print magazines and quoted as a smartphone expert in the New York Times. Read more.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

We’ve talked a lot about how to manage mobile data on Android, but what if your home internet has a data cap too? That can be an issue, especially if your phone starts chewing through your cap with background tasks. The good news is there’s an easy way to get Android to treat specific WI-Fi networks as if they were cellular networks.

How to Restrict Wi-Fi Networks on Android Nougat

If you’re running the latest version of Android on your handset, things are pretty simple. The process may look a little bit different depending on your specific phone’s manufacturer, but should be fairly similar.

First, jump into the Settings menu. You can do this by pulling down the notification shade and tapping the cog icon.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

Then, tap on the Data Usage option.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

At the bottom, you’ll a section labeled “Wi-Fi”. You can see how much data has been used on Wi-Fi with the “Wi-Fi data usage” button. Tap the “network restrictions” button (it may be labeled slightly differently depending on your manufacturer).

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

You’ll see a list of Wi-FI networks. Slide the toggle for networks for which you’d like to restrict data usage.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

How to Restrict Wi-Fi Data on Lollipop and Marshmallow

If you’re using a phone with Android 5.x Lollipop or 6.x Marshmallow, handling metered Wi-Fi networks is slightly different, but still very easy. Start by pulling down the notification tray and tapping on the Settings cog. On some devices, you may need to pull down twice. (We’re using a Samsung Galaxy S7 in this example.)

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

From here, tap into the Data Usage menu.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

This will show your mobile data usage by default. Tap the menu button in the top right corner—it reads “More” on Samsung devices, but it’s just a three-button overflow menu on stock Android.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

Tap the “Restrict Networks” button. Note that the verbiage may be slightly different here—on stock Android is reads “Networks restrictions,” for example.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

This will show a list of all the Wi-Fi networks the device has ever connected to. Use the switches to enable restrictions on any given network. Once activated, this will prevent apps from using background data on that network, and you’ll also get a warning before any large downloads.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

You might have seen the Metered and Unmetered connections option buried deep inside your Android device’s WiFi settings countless times. But do you know its functionality or at least, understand the difference between the metered and unmetered WiFi networks? Not a lot of people seem to have much idea about this. And if you are one of them, then don’t forget to go through this detailed guide. It could be regarded as among the most important feature in the WiFi domain that many people have no clue of. To clear all such doubts, head over to the below section. However, if your doubts are regarding mobile networks, have a look at or comparison of 4G vs 5G Networks.

Metered and Unmetered WiFi Networks

Let’s have a look at what exactly are Metered and Unmetered Connections. Metered Connections could be regarded as a capped network that restricts the amount of data transfer. Whereas an unmetered connection allows for a free flow of data. By default, all WiFi networks on your device are unmetered. And mobile connections are more often than not metered.

This is the reason why you cannot perform heavy data consumption tasks like continuous background sync. Moreover, the Data Saver mode has a considerable impact on all metered connections, further restricting its usability. But it doesn’t have any impact as such on an unmetered connection (i.e. WiFi).

Setting up Metered and Unmetered WiFi on Android

So will there ever be a need to change to metered from an unmetered connection? Well, it depends on an individual basis. If you are using an unlimited network plan, then probably you wouldn’t be in much need of this feature. But people who have a capped (limited) Wi-Fi plan, should definitely consider this option.

So let us see how to enable this feature. The procedure to change the network settings to metered from unmetered is different on Android 9.0 Pie and on previous versions of Android. Keeping this in mind, the instructions are divided into two different sections.

On Android 9.0 Pie Devices

  1. Head over to Settings and navigate to Network and Internet.
  2. Tap on Wi-Fi and then on the WiFi network, you are connected to. However, if you are having issues turning on the WIFi, have a look at the method to fix WiFi connection problems on Android devices.
    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
  3. Among the various available options, tap on Advanced.
  4. More options will now appear. Just below the Security option, you will see the Metered option. It will be set to Detect automatically by default.
    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
  5. To change its current status, tap on Metered and select Treat as metered. The selected network will now be treated as Metered than the earlier Unmetered connection.

On Android 8.0 Oreo or previous versions

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

  1. Navigate to Settings and go to the Wireless and network section.
  2. Search for the Datausage option. Under that, scroll all the way down to the bottom and select Network Restrictions.
  3. Look for the WiFi network of which you wish to restrict data and toggle on the switch next to that network.
  4. That’s it. You have successfully changed the required WiFi network status to Metered from Unmetered connection.

Metered and Unmetered Mobile Networks

In the case of mobile networks, you wouldn’t directly find any method regarding metered/unmetered connections. But still, there exist various methods using which you could restrict the amount of data. This procedure will mostly be required if you have set up a portable hotspot using your data pack. Most data packs have a limited volume, exceeding which you may be charged. So to limit the data being shared, follow the below instructions.

Restricting Data on Android devices

  1. Assuming that your data is turned on, head over to Settings.
  2. Go to Network &Internet and tap on Data usage.
  3. Now, tap on the Data warning & limit option and toggle on the switch next to Set data limit.
    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
  4. In the Limiting data usage dialog box that appears, tap OK. Not explicitly, but in fact, we are doing the same thing as changing a network to metered from an unmetered connection by enabling this feature.
  5. Finally, enter the maximum data in MB or GB that you wish to consume/share with others. Tap on Set once you have entered the data limit.
    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
  6. You may also set a data warning. This will warn you once the data consumption reaches the limit mentioned above. For that, enable the toggle next to Set data warning and enter the required data in the Data warning option.

So with this, we conclude the guide on Metered and Unmetered WiFi networks on Android. Do let us know what you feel about this feature in the comments section below.

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How to stop Android data from being gobbled up in the background

How to stop Android data from being gobbled up in the background

Some apps take advantage of background data. Jack Wallen shows you how to disable this in certain apps and prevent your data from being gobbled up.

I did a bit of traveling recently that required me to heavily depend on Google Maps. The app is amazing at keeping me from getting lost (which I do a lot). I was also under the impression that Google Maps could do a great job of using up my data. So, while I was traveling, I decided to take a peek at the data usage while Maps was frantically keeping me on track to get back home. What I found was quite surprising. It turns out that Maps wasn’t using as much data as I thought, whereas ATT UVERSE (an app I rarely use) was. In fact, UVERSE was sucking up nearly as much data as email (Figure A).

Figure A

UVERSE using up data even though the app isn’t used.

So, I figured I’d stop this from happening. The question was… how? I could certainly uninstall the UVERSE app, but there is the rare occasion that I actually use it to set up a recording remotely. With that in mind, what should I do?

Easy… disable the apps ability to use background data. Let me show you how to do that. Just follow these steps:

  1. Open up Settings on your device
  2. Locate and tap Data usage
  3. Locate the app you want to prevent using your data in the background
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the app listing
  5. Tap to enable Restrict background data (Figure B)

Figure B

Restricting background data for the ATT UVERSE app.

That’s it. At this point, the app will no longer be able to make use of data when it is in the background. The only time the app in question can use data is if the app is open.

I highly recommend you go through the listing of apps in the Data usage page and restrict background data usage for apps you don’t work with. Make sure to be careful not to disable background data for Android services — in other words, only disable background data for third-party apps you’ve installed.

Have you found certain apps to be out of control with your data? If so, which ones have caused you the most problems, and how did you go about resolving the issue? Share your experience in the discussion thread below.

So you’ve got your new Xiaomi phone, whether it be the Mi3, Mi4, Redmi Note or another of Xiamoi’s devices, and you’re ready to start getting all the apps you can handle downloaded to your new device, but then a problem arises! It seems that no matter what connection you use you’re constantly impeded by the strange WiFi-only limitation for downloads, whether it be the browser or within an app, you can’t seem to download any files larger than 1MB. This was even the case on apps like the Google Play Store that normally let you choose whether or not you want to use WiFi or you don’t care, and seems to be some universal download management within this phone.

Well it looks like you guessed right in this case, because Xiaomi is very good about bandwidth management on their operating system, and as such there’s an incredibly small threshold set by default on the device. Thankfully this is an easy fix, and it can be found by going to the Downloads app. Once in here click the little gear icon on the top right of the app to enter the settings for the app, and you’ll find the data usage slider right there. This controls all data usage and downloads on a system level, and I’ve found that even with WiFi on it will often restrict your downloads until it feels confident that you aren’t using a metered cell data connection. This was even the case with hotspots for me, as it assumed that was actually a metered cell data connection and wouldn’t allow me to download anything. Setting this to a more reasonable limit than 1MB is great, but if you want to disable it altogether you can just change it to unlimited. Now you should be able to download anything you want on any connection that makes you feel good, so get to it! If you don’t have your own Xiaomi Mi4 you can buy the 16GB version here, and the 64GB version here!

Here are answers to some common questions about metered Internet connections. If your Internet service provider charges you for the amount of data that you use, you may find this information useful.

Internet service providers can charge by data used (the amount of data sent and received by your PC). That’s called ametered Internet connection. These plans often have a data limit, and if you exceed the limit you might have to pay extra. In some cases, you aren’t charged extra but your connection speed becomes slower until the billing cycle ends.

If you have a metered Internet connection, setting your network connection to metered in Windows can help you reduce the amount of data you send and receive.

It depends on whether your Internet service provider charges you by the amount of data you use. Some general guidelines:

Wi‑Fi networks. By default, Windows sets Wi‑Fi networks to non-metered. But if your Internet service provider charges you by the amount of data you use, setting your network connection to metered can help you limit your data usage.

Mobile broadband networks. By default, Windows sets mobile broadband networks to metered. But if your mobile broadband service is actually unlimited, then you might want to change the network setting to non-metered.

If you’re not sure what to do, keep a record of your data usage. If you find that you’re being billed for extra data usage, setting your network connection to metered can help you manage this.

Note: Ethernet network connections can’t be set to metered.

Any app that relies on an Internet connection to update or display info may be limited in the amount of data it can download or display. You might notice these and other effects:

Windows Update will only download priority updates.

Apps downloading from the Windows Store might be paused.

Start screen tiles might stop updating.

Offline files might not sync automatically.

Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, select Settings > Change PC settings.
(If you’re using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, choose Settings, and then select Change PC settings.)

Choose Network, and then select Connections.

Select the connection you want to change. Next, under Data usage, turn on or off Set as a metered connection.

Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, select Settings > Change PC settings.
(If you’re using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, choose Settings, and then select Change PC settings.)

Select Metered connections. Next, under Sync settings, turn off both sliders.

Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, select Settings > Change PC settings.
(If you’re using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, choose Settings, and then select Change PC settings.)

Select PC and devices.

Select Devices, then make sure Download over metered connections is set to Off.

This blocks the download of device drivers from Windows Update and device info for your device, while your Internet connection is set to metered. (These downloads will resume next time you’re on a non-metered Internet connection.)

Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, select Settings > Change PC settings.
(If you’re using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, choose Settings, and then select Change PC settings.)

Select Search and apps.

Select Search. Next, under Metered connections at the bottom of the page, turn off both sliders.

This prevents you from receiving search suggestions and web results from Bing when you’re on a metered connection.

You might receive this message when you connect a device and it tries to connect to the Internet using a metered connection to check for new device software. To avoid unexpected data charges, your PC won’t allow the device to automatically check for new software when you use a metered connection.

To always download device software on a metered connection:

Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, select Settings > Change PC settings.
(If you’re using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, choose Settings, and then select Change PC settings.)

Select PC and devices.

Select Devices, then make sure Download over metered connections is set to On.

Once you’ve finished downloading your devices updates, you can turn this setting off to avoid unexpected charges when you’re on a metered network.

Note: Device software packages can be large, which may result in additional charges when downloaded on metered networks.

There are good apps to track Android usage and limit the data on Android. If you have one Android data monitor, there is no need to be surprised when you receive next data usage bill. Now we have lightning data speed with LTE/5G connection on smartphones. This has indeed brought a sweet yet savage little problem for the end-users; higher data usage. Data monitoring app has become an integral component for smartphone users. This data tracker essentially lets you keep a watch on your overall data usage on mobile or Wi-Fi, individual app data usage, and usage patterns.

Here’s a list of the best Android Apps Can Monitor Data and Limit Usage that will help you to control and save money on the data plan.

My Data Manager

Key features: Summary of overall data | Individual App data track | Set an alert on data limit | Download from PlayStore

This Android data monitor app is a very comprehensive option for users when it comes to data monitoring. The simple GUI lets you comprehend your usage in the most simplistic way. The summary page gives you an idea about your overall usage with the number of days left on the cycle.

You can easily navigate to find the individual app consumption and consumption day-wise. Other interesting features of the app include the ability to forecast consumption as per current usage, set alarms to warn you before plan exhaustion, view net usage in shared plans, as well call & SMS tracking. The presence of a beta version of the app is an indicator that you are going to timely updates.

Internet Speed Meter

Key feature: Internet Speed Meter | Detailed data use view | Display upload/download data use | Download from PlayStore

As the name suggests, the primary attraction for this Android data track app is to display internet speed and voila you don’t have to worry about the hassles of rooting or Xposed modules for this one. You can position the meter on the status bar to your convenience, set what you want to see, set refresh rates etc. In addition, you can have a more detailed view in the notification.

The Internet speed and data monitor app is pretty basic graphically but serves you with all you need. It is powered to display day-wise mobile and Wi-Fi usage, app data usage breakdown as uploaded and downloaded, display customizations for color and to choose whether you want to see download/upload or combined, choose to auto start the app or disable persistent notification.

Data Usage Monitor

Key features: Cellular Data/WiFi Summary | Daily Threshold set | Floating widget | Download from PlayStore

A simple Android data monitoring apps with not a flurry of options. It brings you all that you need in a clean GUI. Main highlights are the summary of data/WiFi usage with a daily usage threshold graph.

It also has app usage breakdown and the percentage contribution of each app to overall usage, day-wise usage breakdown, floating widget for real-time speed display. It is indeed a pretty basic app, but the floating speed widget can be handy.

Traffic Monitor& 3G/4G Speed

Key features: Speed Test | Speed comparison | Coverage map | task manager | Download from PlayStore

This Android data traffic monitor is a feature-rich app option in this segment. While giving all the expected details Traffic Monitor adds a few more interesting options to the user, that too in an ad-free package. The highlights are Inclusion of speed test, which archives results. The test results let you compare your speed with other users in your region, coverage map is a feature which displays network availability based on your location, integrated task manager to view and if required kill data hogging apps.

Traffic Monitor is a multi-dimensional app which fulfills your primary objective of tracking data usage along with cutting down the need to install a few other apps to ensure data quality. This app too has a beta version.

Data Usage

Key features: Data usage summary | Day/Month usage | ideal use level | Download from PlayStore

This app summarizes your data usage in a pretty simple interface. The summary page has usage details for the day, ideal usage, and usage projections. The features include custom billing cycles, progress bar with quota exhaustion indicative colors and alerts for data quota consumption. This app does all that is required to monitor data but has a slightly outdated interface and was updated a while ago last.

Internet Speed Meter

Key features: Display network speed on status bar | lightweight | real-time speed display | monthly data record | Download from PlayStore

Another simple app to display network speed on the status bar and notification panel. A very-light app with limited features – Real-time speed display, daily and monthly Data Usage Record, separate Data and WiFi statistics. This app lacks the ability to go deeper in usage patterns as it lacks app usage details. However, this Android Internet Speed Meter app is pretty light and battery efficient.

Protect Free VPN+Data Manager

Key features: Intuitive reporting | Set monthly cap | report on billing cycle | data use comparison based on app | Download from PlayStore

Onavo Free VPN+ Data Manager is a VPN and Data usage track app with intuitive reporting to help you understand how you use mobile data. This app lets you set monthly cap and billing cycle and use measures up to other people for each app. When you’re approaching your data limit and get an indication of where you stand in your current data cycle with notifications on your phone. Onavo Count monitors and analyzes all types of mobile data and phone use. This includes background, foreground, and Wi-Fi use.

The above apps are your best bets on data tracking on the Android phone. My Data Manager is the most comprehensive and Traffic Monitor being the most versatile with its feature-rich content. If you are looking for basic information, and don’t want to go the details, other listed data monitoring apps are pretty much capable of fulfilling your requirements.

Disclosure: Mashtips is supported by its audience. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

I’ve been working for a while around a lack of ability to restrict Crashlytics network usage under certain conditions. For example – on roaming, on metered networks and so on..

According to SDK documentation, only two options I found addressing somehow this:

“Opt Out” on runtime by simply not initialize Crashlytics

built-in User consent dialog before sending a crash report

This API’s are very limited, because:

Not initialize Crashlytics not only prevents network access but also prevents any chance Crashlytics will save locally the crash report so that eventually the event will be sent. Not to mention there is no good way to opt out in runtime, besides overriding brutally the Thread.setUncaughtExceptionHandler

consent dialog not making any sense to the user if a crash happens in the background.

My question basically: Am I missing something? Is there any way to restrict Crashlytics network access?

My motivation comes from a need to prevent situation my app uses network bandwidth potentially can cost money to the user under certain conditions, although “cellular network” or “use data over roaming” device settings are enabled.

6 Answers 6

There is not a way to restrict the internet usage for Crashlytics in an application. But how I would fix it is to either give the user information that Crashlytics is using roaming or just save the crash report locally and send them once the user in connected with a wifi network. Also you could give the user the choice if he prefers to save the crash reports locally or send them right away over roaming.

  1. Save the ErrorLog locally on the device
  2. Upload the ErrorLog once a connection with a wifi is established

You should be able to use the ConnectivityManager to get the state of the Wi-Fi adapter. From there you can check if it is connected or even available.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

I’m the former maintainer of the Crashlytics SDK for iOS/macOS. I’m relatively unfamiliar with the Android version of the SDK, and definitely unfamiliar with Android in general. But, I’ll give this a shot.

What you want to do is something that has been requested on the iOS side a few times. I would have loved to do it actually, because it seems pretty terrible to force end-users to incur these costs. However, the iOS SDK’s networking and start up routine are both very complex and very delicate. It is highly challenging to guarantee that crashes are delivered and that there are zero possibilities for inconsistent states. I believe that Android is simpler here, but I cannot say this with authority.

The iOS SDK, however, does have some hooks for additional client-level functionality. Check out the warning around one of those APIs:

Basically, in order to satisfy the contract of this particular API, some techniques to improve reporting reliability have to be disabled. The thing is, sometimes it’s worth it. Lots of apps decide to make this tradeoff. Many apps also delay initializing Crashlytics to eek out extra performance. This has a huge impact on reporting reliability, but that’s another tradeoff app developers have to make.

I think you should seriously consider just not enabling Crashlytics in these situations, if you can easily detect them. Maybe Android even allows end-users to do this on a per-app basis? In that case, you’d never get any reports anyways. I would imagine that your user base is diverse enough that missing some reports in these situations wouldn’t be that terrible. Or, perhaps you’d like to surface it as a user-facing option.

You could even do something totally crazy, like override Thread.setUncaughtExceptionHandler yourself, and buffer up exceptions during this situation to disk. And then, replay them to Crashlytics when things are better. Turn it into an open source lib. I bet people will love it! Possibly not the Crashlytics’ Android team though 😉 (Hi!)

This is also basically the same recommendation Gastón offered above, with just some extra context around what I’ve seen on the iOS side. Also shoot the Crashlytics people an email asking for this. I think it’s a great idea.

A metered connection is an internet connection that has a data limit associated with it. Some apps might work differently on a metered connection to help reduce your data usage. Also, some updates for Windows won’t be installed automatically. A cellular data network connection is set as metered by default. Wi-Fi and Ethernet network connections can be set to metered but aren’t by default.

You might notice that the Set as metered connection setting is turned on and greyed out in any of the following places, so you can’t turn it off:

Settings > Network & Internet > Cellular > Advanced options.

Settings > Network & Internet > Wi-Fi > select the Wi-Fi network you’re connected to.

Settings > Network & Internet > Ethernet > select the Ethernet network you’re connected to.

If you want to change the Set as metered connection setting, do one or more of the following:

Remove the data limit if one is set. To do this:

Select the Start button, then select Settings > Network & Internet > Status .

Under the network you’re connected to, select Data usage.

Select the network connection under Choose a network, and then select Remove limit > Remove.

Make sure you’re signed in with an account that has administrator rights. To check, do the following:

Select the Start button, then select Settings > Accounts > Your info.

Look under your account name and see if it says Administrator.

Check with your IT support person. The metered connection setting might be set by your organization, so you can’t change it.

Note: If you set a network connection as an unmetered connection but it still has a limited data plan, you might go over your data limit for that network and incur charges.

A metered network connection will try to control and reduce data usage on the network, so some apps might work differently on a metered connection. Also, some updates for Windows won’t be installed automatically.

You can manually set Wi-Fi and Ethernet network connections to metered if you want to reduce the amount of data used by apps and services on that network. A cellular data network connection is set as metered by default.

To set a network as a metered connection

Wi-Fi: In Settings, select Network & internet > Wi-Fi > the Wi-Fi network you’re connected to, then turn on Metered connection.

Ethernet: In Settings, select Network & internet > Ethernet > the network you’re connected to, then turn on Metered connection.

Cellular: In Settings, select Network & internet > Cellular, then turn on Metered connection.

You might notice that the Metered connection setting is greyed out in any of the places mentioned above. If it is, check with your IT support person. The metered connection setting might be set by your organization, so you can’t change it.

Note: If you set a network connection as an unmetered connection but it still has a limited data plan, you might go over your data limit for that network and incur charges.

A metered connection is an Internet connection that has a data limit associated with it. Cellular data connections are set as metered by default. Wi-Fi and Ethernet network connections can be set to metered but aren’t by default. Some apps might work differently on a metered connection to help reduce your data usage. Also, some updates for Windows won’t be installed automatically.

If your device is running Windows 10 (version 1903 or version 2004) and you turned off the Set as metered connection option for your cellular data connection, your device might reset to metered again when it wakes up from hibernation, or after it shuts down.

To set a Wi-Fi network connection as metered:

Select Start > Settings > Network & Internet > Wi-Fi > Manage known networks.

Select the Wi-Fi network > Properties > turn on Set as metered connection.

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How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

If you didn’t have a chance to lock into unlimited data back before most carriers killed it off, then you are likely on a tiered data plan that forces you to constantly monitor your usage. With limits as low as 1GB on some carriers, there may be times when you reach your limit and need to toggle data off to save yourself from overages and penalty fees. Thankfully, the Android operating system has made this easier than ever to do with just a few quick steps. Even better, though, they allow you to set data limits, so that your phone will warn you as you approach your monthly data allotment.

Instructions (Turning Off Data):

1. To turn off mobile data, pull down your notification bar and open up Settings.
2. On many phones, your third option from the top is “Data Usage.”
3. Tap on that.
4. From this screen, you can monitor the amount of data usage you have used over the month.
5. If you would like to turn off mobile data, simply flip the switch at the top to “Off.”

Instructions (Setting Data Limits):

1. Setting a data limit should be done by anyone with a tiered data plan.
2. From that same settings screen, you can drag the orange warning bar to a limit of your choosing.
3. Your phone will warn you as you approach, with a notification shortcut to this screen.
4. Be sure to set you Data Usage Cycle to match-up to your carrier’s billing cycle.

If the Wi-Fi on your Android phone turns on automatically when you’re near strong or known networks, here is how you can fix it.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

We’re connected to the Internet nearly 24/7 – on our phones and TVs, through our smart speakers. But maybe you want to switch off every now and then, just tune out and not be hooked into the online hive mind at all times.

So it can be annoying when your Android phone suddenly starts going back online without your permission. You may find that the Wi-Fi on your Android phone turns on automatically when you’re near strong or known networks, and here we’re going to show you how to stop your phone from doing this.

Also read: 4 of the Best Android WiFi Manager Apps to Better Manage Your WiFi Connection

By default, your Android phone may be turning on automatically when you’re near one of your saved networks, but you may not always want this!

Disable Adaptive Connectivity

On Google Pixel phones, there’s a setting called “Adaptive Connectivity.” The idea of this is that it automatically switches between different network standards – 3G, 4G, 5G – depending on the bandwidth required by whatever activity you’re doing (so streaming will go on 5G while lighter activities like messaging apps will use 4G).

What many people don’t know is that Adaptive Connectivity “listens” for Wi-Fi connections too, and may be switching your Wi-Fi on if it deems that to be the best connection type for your activity.

To turn off this feature, go to “Settings -> Network & Internet -> Adaptive connectivity”, and turn it off there.

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

Also read: What Does It Mean When Data is “Roaming?”

Stop Wi-Fi Turning on Automatically

To turn this feature off, go to “Settings -> Network & Internet -> Wi-Fi -> Wi-Fi preferences.”

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

On this screen, tap the “Turn on Wi-Fi automatically” slider so that it’s set to the Off position. (While you’re at it, make sure “Connect to open networks” is off too.)

How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

And that’s pretty much it! You’ll now be connecting to the Wi-Fi around you on your own terms, which will save you battery, give you more control over the influx of information coming in from your 1000 apps, and give you a bit of a breather.

While you’re playing around on your Android phone, how about learning how to find downloaded files on any Android device? To dig even deeper, you should install TWRP recovery, which will give you more control over your data, let you sideload apps, and handle other under-the-hood functionality.

Also read: How to Kick Unwanted Connections Off Your Wi-Fi

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The ability to set a data limit or cap on a computer or smartphone is nothing new but with the arrival of Windows 11, that may not work exactly how you remember. And that can be frustrating. Especially if you’re on a metered connection or tethering via a mobile connection. Or if you happen to have a data cap on your monthly internet usage. Or, conversely, if just want to otherwise limit the time you or your child spend online on a computer.

Fortunately, that’s exactly what this guide is here to cover for. So if you have questions related to those things, it should provide some answers.

How to set an internet data cap or limit on Windows 11

Setting an internet data cap or limit in Windows 11 isn’t as easy as it may be on some other platforms. Or as easy as changing some other Windows 11 settings or using other features, for that matter. But, as with all of our guides, this walkthrough should help explain some things about the process. And about the feature.

  1. Press the Windows key and ‘i’ key simultaneously. The former key typically features an icon shaped like four squares, forming a square, and slightly skewed. Windows 11 will call up the System Settings menu
  2. In System Settings, locate and select the “Network & Internet” tab from the left-hand sidebar, as shown in our sample images below
  3. In the resulting menu, scroll down and select “Advanced network settings”
  4. Under the “More settings” subheader, select “Data usage” from the options. The resulting page will showcase your usage statistics. Such as how much you’ve used in the last thirty days for the selected WiFi or connection. For instance, in our example, the box with the connection being managed reads “Wi-Fi (Milan).” You can use the down arrow to select a different network if the wrong one is selected by default for managing. The page will also show how much of that time was spent on which apps or services
  5. Near the top-right-hand side of the page, after ensuring the proper connection is chosen, select “Enter limit”
  6. The next several steps will explain what the fillable segments of the “Set data limit” menu are in Windows 11 and how to fill them in. Starting with the Limit type. Windows 11 allows you to set the data limit or cap just once, for a specific date range. That’s dubbed “One time” in the menu. Monthly, conversely, will set a data cap for every month and that cap will reset on a specific day. Finally, “Unlimited” allows tracking of data usage but doesn’t cap the data usage.
  7. For Monthly limiting, select the radial button next to “Monthly” and then select which day of the month will reset the cycle. The latter option can be selected via the drop-down menu under the “Monthly reset data” subheading. Next, set a data limit. Windows allows users to select either Megabyte (MB) or GB (Gigabyte) under the “Unit” subheading. So you can choose the unit that works best for you and then enter the maximum amount of data you’d like to use on the internet connection in question
  8. Selecting “One time” limiting, conversely, allows you to set the limit just as with Monthly limiting. However, you’re also given the option of setting how long that limit will remain in place. Which can prove useful if you’re limiting because you’re close to going over but don’t ordinarily. Or if you’re accessing just once on a metered or limited connection
  9. Finally, selecting “Unlimited” doesn’t meter the connection at all. Rather, it provides a monthly reset date and then simply shows users how much data was used for which apps and services during the user-defined period. So the only option available when that option is selected, is one that tells Windows 11 when to reset the data usage tracking
  10. Select the “Save” button at the bottom of the limit setting UI to save your changes. Windows 11 will now show how much of your limit you’ve used

How to remove a data cap you no longer need, edit the cap, or turn on metering after setting a limit

You can also remove the data cap or limit if one was set by accident in Windows 11. Or, for any other reason, for that matter.

  1. Return to the “Data usage” page in Settings, following steps one through four above
  2. To remove the data limit that’s been set in Windows 11, simply tap the “Remove limit” button. That’s on the right-hand side of the UI, located just below the data limit progress bar
  3. If you need to Edit the data limit, conversely, select the “Edit limit” button, located to the left of the “Remove limit” button. Windows 11 will allow you to change and then “Save” any values stored in the resulting menu
  4. To change your settings toMetered, tap or click the toggle in the “Metered connection” box. As shown in the images below, choosing to force Windows to treat your connection as metered will limit and change how some apps behave. The result will be a smaller amount of data used overall but shouldn’t impact functionality in most apps. Some trial and error may be required, if app notifications or other features aren’t working as you’d like them to

How to reset the data usage stats if something goes wrong and your limit or cap seems off …or for any other reason

Of course, if you need to reset the data usage, that’s fairly straightforward. Regardless of what your reason for resetting is.

  1. Return to the “Data usage” page in Settings, following steps one through four in the first segment of this guide
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the page and select “Reset”
  3. Windows will confirm the choice, informing the user that data will be reset on all networks associated with your Windows 11 machine.
  4. Select “Reset” from the confirmation menu to follow through with the reset. Select “Cancel” to cancel the reset

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How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

One of life’s simple pleasures while cruising is disconnecting from the outside world and powering down our tablets, smartphones, and laptops for a few days. However, for some, including myself this is not an always an option due to one reason or another. This post is for those who are utilizing Disney Cruise Line’s internet data packages and how to maximize your usage by minimizing unnecessary data usage with Apple iOS devices such as iPads and iPhones and Android tablets and smartphones.

The first tip, is to download the Disney Cruise Line Navigator app before you leave home or while you still have access to free WiFi. This is really on a data saving tip if you really want to utilize the app while onboard and are willing to use your data plan to download the app from your respective App Store. I wouldn’t suggest it, but sometimes you got to do what you got to do. Another note about the Navigator App, you DO NOT need a data plan to use the app. The app works onboard when connected to the DCL-GUEST wireless network without internet access.

A few years ago when the data plans first launched, an onboard [email protected] representative gave me a few handouts with suggestions on various setting changes to avoid wasting data plan megabytes. I’ve been looking all over for these papers and they are either hidden somewhere in the house or they were recycled. Anyway, during our recent cruise, I picked up the following printouts for minimizing data consumption for Apple iOS and Android devices.

For Apple iOS Apple Users | Turn OFF:

  • My Photo Stream (Settings > Photo & Camera)
    Prevents photos from automatically uploading
  • Background App Refresh (Settings > General > Background App Refresh)
    Prevents apps from refreshing automatically in the background
  • Automatic Music/Apps/Updates Downloads (Settings > iTunes & App Store)
    Stops music, apps and updates from automatically downloading
  • Location Services (Settings > Privacy)
    Prevents GPS services from detecting your exact location
  • Fetch New Data, change to Fetch Manually (Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars > Fetch New Data)
    Prevents new E-mail messages from automatically downloading
  • iCloud Backup (Settings > iCloud > Storage & Backup)
    Stops pictures and data from automatically syncing to iCloud
  • Software Updates (Software Update > Edit > Preferences > Advanced > Uncheck Auto Update)
    Device no longer searches for software updates automatically

Android Debug Bridge is command line utility to communicate with the Android device that is connected either via USB or Wi-Fi, or with an emulator(Android virtual device) running on the development machine.

Generic ADB Commands

Below is list of adb commands used widely while working with Android platform.

List devices with name, serial number

Send a command to a specific device when multiple devices are connected

Collect logcat continuously and save to a file (-v time, logs the time. -b all, logs all buffers). It should be stopped explicitly.

Dump existing logs into a file. It stops automatically.

Older versions of adb, only .txt is saved

newer versions of adb, all files put into a zip

Change logcat buffer size to maximum 16MB

List applications installed in the device

List third party apps only

List system apps only

List enabled packages only

List disabled packages only

Disable an application, in eng builds only

Enable an application, in eng builds only

Get build display id

Get build fingerprint

Press any key on device

Push file to the device

Pull a file from the device

Reboot the device

Reboot into bootloader

Reboot into recovery

Take a screenshot

Enter text on the focussed edit text

Re-install an app . If the app is already installed , it will be uninstalled before installing again

Install an app in external storage

Uninstall an app

Get android version

Force stop an application

Remount system partition as read write, engineering build only

Get selinux state

Set selinux state, engineering build only

Remove selinux enforcement, engineering build only

When device is connected over WiFi, all adb commands can be sent over WiFi.

Start an actiivty from adb

We can start any activity from adb commands either explicitly by mentioning the name of the package and name of the class, or implicitly by just the name of intent action.

Intent actions for all settings can be found here

Enable data saver mode

Disable data saver mode

Add an app to data saver mode whitelist

Remove an app from data saver mode whitelist

List all WiFi networks

Make a non-metered WiFI newtork into a metered one

Simulate unplug battery event

Reset battery unplug

Send app to stand by state

Remove app from stand by state

About

Here is a handy list of adb commands widely used while working with Android platform.

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  • Configuring the network as metered is the best way to control it on Android. On Android 12 you can configure the network after you’ve connected to it. Select the gear icon next to the network name under the internet settings (settings -> Network & internet -> Internet) then click on the pencil icon to edit the network settings. Pull down “Advanced settings” and change the “Metered” setting to “Treat as metered”

    Once you’ve configured the network disable the following.

    Disable Google Account sync
    Settings -> Passwords & accounts -> Automatically sync app data

    Disable Google Photo sync
    Photos -> User image -> photos settings -> Back up & sync ->Back up & sync

    Disable Play store auto-update/auto play
    Play Store -> User -> Settings -> General -> Network preferences -> Auto-update apps
    Play Store -> User -> Settings -> General -> Network preferences -> Auto-play videos

    Turn on Data Saver (This is what enforces the metered network settings. Make sure to do this)
    Settings -> Network & internet -> Data Saver

    After turning on data saver configure the apps you wish to have unrestricted access to the network by clicking on the “Unrestricted data” field. I give unrestricted access to Carrier Services, Disney Cruise Line Navigator, and Google Play Services

    Disable Wi-Fi calling
    Settings -> Network & internet -> Calls & SMS -> Wi-Fi calling

    If you use WhatsApp Disable the google drive backup and auto media download
    Settings -> Chats -> Chat backup -> Back up to Google Drive
    Settings -> Storage and data -> When connected on Wi-Fi

    Last update date: July 15, 2014

    You can use Xiaomi’s built-in Data usage feature to track your mobile data usage to avoid additional charges on your bill.

    If you’ve zero idea on how to use Data usage, be sure to read the FAQ below for more information:

    How to access the Data Usage feature ?

    1. On your device, find and launch the Security app.
    2. Tap Data usage.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    How to create a home screen shortcut for Data usage ?

    1. On the Security app, long tap Data usage, and then tap Create shortcut.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    How to set mobile data limit ?

    1. On the Security app, tap Data usage.
    2. Tap , then select Mobile data limit.
    3. Tap Peak data limit to enter your monthly mobile data limit.
    4. Adjust the Data Usage Warning Level slider to set the usage warning level. When the device reaches this level, you will see a usage warning.
    5. Tap Usage cycle reset date to set the date of the month where the data usage is reset to 0.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    How to read the Data usage “meter” ?

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
    Note: If you’re about to reach your data limit, the “water” will change to red.

    How to prevent mobile data from turning off automatically when the usage exceeds the data limit ?

    The mobile data connection will disable automatically when the usage exceeds the set data limit. If for some reason, you don’t wish your phone to behave in such a manner, follow these steps to turn this feature off :

    Note: Additional charges may be incurred if you disable this feature.

    1. On the Security app, tap Data usage.
    2. Tap .
    3. Slide the Restrict peak data usage switch to the left to turn it off.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    How to restrict a downloaded app from using mobile data ?

    1. On the Security app, tap Data usage.
    2. Tap Restrict >Downloaded
    3. Find the app you want to restrict the use of mobile data.
    4. Tap the “Allow” button to change to “Disallow” in the Data column.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Tip: You can also toggle allow/disallow for Wi-Fi data for downloaded apps.

    How to restrict a system (or stock) app from using mobile data ?

    1. On the Security app, tap Data usage.
    2. Tap Restrict >Apps.
    3. Find the app you want to restrict the usage of mobile data.
    4. Tap the “Allow” button to change to “Disallow” .
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    What’s the quickest way to check your daily data usage ?

    1. On the Security app, tap Data usage.
    2. Tap , then ensure you have Show data usage notifications turned on.
    3. Now, you can open the notification panel from the top, then go to the Notifications screen to see today’s data usage, remaining data and monthly limit information.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    How to track data usage per app ?

    1. On the Security app, tap Data usage.
    2. Tap Stats to see a list of apps that are sorted by their data usage.
    3. You can select to see the list of either today, yesterday or this month.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Tip: Tap to choose to sort the apps by Data usage, Wi-Fi usage or Total usage.

    Note: The steps here were written for a Xiaomi device running MIUI V5. If you’re having a different version of MIUI, there’s a possibility that the steps and screenshots will be different.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    If you have internet data limits and don’t want to cross them, you can easily manage them using built-in Windows features. You can even install third-party apps to help you manage your data and bandwidth. This tutorial will address this and show you how to manage bandwidth and data usage on Windows 11/10 systems.

    Bandwidth and Data Usage Windows

    Managing and limiting bandwidth and data will allow you to ensure that you never go over your data plan. It can be costly, especially if you have a limited data plan. The process to do this is very simple, and you can do it quickly. It doesn’t matter if you have a Windows 10 system or a Windows 11 OS. The steps are more or less the same. If they vary, it will be mentioned, so read on ahead.

    Metered Connection

    For Windows 10, follow the steps below:

    1. Use the shortcut keys Win + I to open the Settings app.
    2. Select Network & Internet.
    3. Select the WiFi option from the left pane.
    4. Select Manage Known Networks.
    5. Choose the connection you want to limit data for.
    6. Click on Properties.
    7. Turn the toggle switch On next to Set as metered connection.

    If you selected Ethernet in step-3, you have to follow only two steps after step-3:

    4. Select a connection for which you want to set up a data limit.

    5. Turn the toggle switch On next to Set as metered connection.

    For Windows 11, the steps are slightly different:

    1. Use the shortcut keys Win + I to open the Settings app.
    2. Select Network & Internet from the left pane.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
    3. Select Properties.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
    4. Turn the toggle switch On next to Metered Connection.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Data Usage

    You can set up a data usage limit, which will automatically enable the metered connection feature.

    For Windows 10:

    Step-1: Open Settings app using shortcut keys Win + I.

    Step-2: Select Network & Internet.

    Step-3: In the Network status section, choose the connection you want to set a data limit for. Select the Data usage option for this connection.

    Step-4: Under Data limit, select Enter limit.

    Step-5: Enter details that suit you, like the time you want to limit the data for and for the data limit.

    Step-6: After you are satisfied, click on Save.

    Windows 11:

    1. Open Settings app using shortcut keys Win + I.
    2. Select Network & Internet.
    3. Select Data usage.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
    4. Select the network type WiFi/Ethernet from the drop-down menu.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
    5. Click on Enter Limit.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android
    6. Enter the relevant details and then click Save.
      How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    I hope this helps. Let us know in the comments below.

    Having your battery drain faster than expected is one of the biggest headaches with any Android phone. Tracking down a charger and plugging in shortly after a full charge overnight is always a sad feeling. If you’re ready to thwart your battery woes, a simple culprit may be to blame. Here’s what you need to know to conquer background apps.

    These apps can sap your battery and precious resources, but there may be a few different causes for your problems. Some apps might not be well optimized, some might be malware, or some might be buggy. All you need now is a little know-how, and we’ll have you living the charged life shortly.

    Ready for a little extra juice at no cost? Let’s get into the best battery improvements.

    Editor’s note: Some of the steps in this article were put together using a Google Pixel 4a with 5G running Android 12. Keep in mind steps may differ, depending on your hardware and software.

    Update your device!

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Android updates often include battery improvements, bug fixes, and performance upgrades. All of these make for a more efficient device, which in turn can improve the way your handset handles background apps. This is why you should always keep your device updated to the latest Android version available.

    How to check for Android updates:

    1. Open the Settings app.
    2. Go into System.
    3. Tap on System update.
    4. This page will let you know if there’s an update available. You can also Check for updates.
    5. If there’s an update available, follow on-screen instructions to install the update.

    Similarly, app updates can also bring improvements, so always make sure you’re running the latest version of all your applications.

    How to check for app updates:

    1. Open the Google Play Store.
    2. Tap on your profile picture in the top-right corner.
    3. Select Manage apps & device.
    4. Go into Updates available.
    5. Hit Update all (if available).

    Take advantage of Adaptive Battery, if you can

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Many phones are still running on Android 10, even though Android 11 has been out for a while, and the latest devices now sport Android 12. Luckily, that’s good news for everyone. Android 10 introduced excellent power management features that limit background apps and extend your phone’s battery life.

    One of them is called Adaptive Battery, which uses machine learning to figure out which apps you’ll use in the next few hours, and which ones you won’t use until later, if at all, that day. Based on your usage patterns, it places each app into one of the five App Standby Buckets: “Active,” “Working set,” “Frequent,” “Rare,” and “Never.” Each of these buckets has its limitations for how many resources the apps it contains can use.

    To put it simply, an app placed in the “Never” bucket is hardly ever used, which is why the system will limit its access to resources like the CPU. This means it will use less battery. On the other hand, apps in buckets like “Active” are the ones you use the most and will get full access to the system’s resources, so you can expect to get all your notifications on time.

    The process is automatic and dynamic, which means the system learns your usage pattern over time and moves the apps from one bucket to the other accordingly.

    How to turn on Adaptive Battery:

    1. Open the Settings app.
    2. Select Battery.
    3. Go into Adaptive preferences.
    4. Toggle Adaptive Battery on.

    Check what’s draining your phone

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Battery

    Since battery life is so important, it’s well monitored by your Android OS. To look at the background apps guzzling power, go to Settings > Battery > Battery Usage. You’ll get a list of what’s draining your battery, and by how much. Depending on your device and software, the apps will be split into either system or non-system apps or by hardware and software to make things even more accessible.

    The more you use certain apps, the higher on the list they’ll sit. Look out for any apps you don’t recognize, or ones you don’t use often but still use a significant amount of battery. Any app using over a few percents is worth looking into — saving five percent here or four percent there will add up. Anything that’s a Google app or service is probably not something to worry about and just a natural part of Android and Google’s Services.

    Using Developer options, you can also check out which apps dominate your phone’s limited memory, also known as RAM. It may be that an app is not using a lot of battery, but when you’re only working with 2GB of RAM and an app you’re not using is taking up a few hundred MB, leaving you short on available memory.

    How to check RAM usage:

    1. Open the Settings app.
    2. Go into System.
    3. Tap on About phone.
    4. Scroll down to the Build number and tap on it seven times to enable Developer options.
    5. You’ll be asked to enter your PIN. Go ahead.
    6. You’re now a “Developer.”
    7. Go back to the main Settings menu.
    8. Go into System.
    9. Select Developer options.
    10. Hit Running services.

    Here you can view which processes are running, your used and available RAM, and which apps are using it up. Again, some of these services are essential to keep your phone running. It would be best if you were primarily looking for demanding apps you’ve downloaded.

    Switch off automatic updates to update only when you’re on WiFi

    If you’re using too much data, switch off automatic updates.

    Apple device – go to Settings , then General , then Background App Refresh . Then turn it off. You can still choose to keep it on for certain apps.

    Android device – do this on an app-by-app basis. It doesn’t stop your apps refreshing when connected to WiFi. Go to Settings , then Data usage . You can see all the apps using data. Choose an app, then Restrict background data .

    Use WiFi when you can

    Make use of available WiFi networks and WiFi hotspots when you’re out. WiFi Assist on iPhone can use data if it’s constantly looking for WiFi networks. So you may want to switch it off and manually connect when you need to.

    For auto back-up services like Dropbox or iCloud, choose the WiFi only option.

    Switch it off if you don’t need it

    Cut down how much you tether your phone or use it as a hotspot.

    Turn off features when you don’t need them, like Location.

    Turn off mobile data when you’re not using your phone, such as when you’re sleeping.

    Other handy hints

    Make use of available WiFi networks and WiFi hotspots when you’re out and about. It’s worth mentioning that WiFi Assist on iPhone can actually use up more data than you’d expect if it’s constantly looking for, connecting to, and then disconnecting from WiFi. So you may want to switch it off and just manually connect to WiFi when you need it

    For auto back-up services like Dropbox or iCloud, choose the WiFi only option

    Limit how often you tether your phone or use it as a hotspot

    Turn off features like Location unless you need to use them, to avoid using data

    Switch mobile data off altogether when your phone isn’t in active use – for example, if you leave it on overnight for your wake-up alarm.

    This lesson teaches you to

    1. Check a Device’s Network Connection
    2. Manage Network Usage
    3. Implement a Preferences Activity
    4. Respond to Preference Changes
    5. Detect Connection Changes

    You should also read

    • Optimizing Battery Life
    • Transferring Data Without Draining the Battery
    • Web Apps Overview

    Try it out

    This lesson describes how to write applications that have fine-grained control over their usage of network resources. If your application performs a lot of network operations, you should provide user settings that allow users to control your app’s data habits, such as how often your app syncs data, whether to perform uploads/downloads only when on Wi-Fi, whether to use data while roaming, and so on. With these controls available to them, users are much less likely to disable your app’s access to background data when they approach their limits, because they can instead precisely control how much data your app uses.

    For general guidelines on how to write apps that minimize the battery life impact of downloads and network connections, see Optimizing Battery Life and Transferring Data Without Draining the Battery.

    Check a Device’s Network Connection

    A device can have various types of network connections. This lesson focuses on using either a Wi-Fi or a mobile network connection. For the full list of possible network types, see ConnectivityManager .

    Wi-Fi is typically faster. Also, mobile data is often metered, which can get expensive. A common strategy for apps is to only fetch large data if a Wi-Fi network is available.

    Before you perform network operations, it’s good practice to check the state of network connectivity. Among other things, this could prevent your app from inadvertently using the wrong radio. If a network connection is unavailable, your application should respond gracefully. To check the network connection, you typically use the following classes:

    • ConnectivityManager : Answers queries about the state of network connectivity. It also notifies applications when network connectivity changes.
    • NetworkInfo : Describes the status of a network interface of a given type (currently either Mobile or Wi-Fi).

    This code snippet tests network connectivity for Wi-Fi and mobile. It determines whether these network interfaces are available (that is, whether network connectivity is possible) and/or connected (that is, whether network connectivity exists and if it is possible to establish sockets and pass data):

    Note that you should not base decisions on whether a network is “available.” You should always check isConnected() before performing network operations, since isConnected() handles cases like flaky mobile networks, airplane mode, and restricted background data.

    A more concise way of checking whether a network interface is available is as follows. The method getActiveNetworkInfo() returns a NetworkInfo instance representing the first connected network interface it can find, or null if none of the interfaces is connected (meaning that an internet connection is not available):

    To query more fine-grained state you can use NetworkInfo.DetailedState , but this should seldom be necessary.

    Manage Network Usage

    You can implement a preferences activity that gives users explicit control over your app’s usage of network resources. For example:

    • You might allow users to upload videos only when the device is connected to a Wi-Fi network.
    • You might sync (or not) depending on specific criteria such as network availability, time interval, and so on.

    To write an app that supports network access and managing network usage, your manifest must have the right permissions and intent filters.

    • The manifest excerpted below includes the following permissions:
      • android.permission.INTERNET —Allows applications to open network sockets.
      • android.permission.ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE —Allows applications to access information about networks.
    • You can declare the intent filter for the ACTION_MANAGE_NETWORK_USAGE action (introduced in Android 4.0) to indicate that your application defines an activity that offers options to control data usage. ACTION_MANAGE_NETWORK_USAGE shows settings for managing the network data usage of a specific application. When your app has a settings activity that allows users to control network usage, you should declare this intent filter for that activity. In the sample application, this action is handled by the class SettingsActivity , which displays a preferences UI to let users decide when to download a feed.

    Implement a Preferences Activity

    As you can see in the manifest excerpt above, the sample app’s activity SettingsActivity has an intent filter for the ACTION_MANAGE_NETWORK_USAGE action. SettingsActivity is a subclass of PreferenceActivity . It displays a preferences screen (shown in figure 1) that lets users specify the following:

    • Whether to display summaries for each XML feed entry, or just a link for each entry.
    • Whether to download the XML feed if any network connection is available, or only if Wi-Fi is available.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on androidHow to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Figure 1. Preferences activity.

    Here is SettingsActivity . Note that it implements OnSharedPreferenceChangeListener . When a user changes a preference, it fires onSharedPreferenceChanged() , which sets refreshDisplay to true. This causes the display to refresh when the user returns to the main activity:

    Respond to Preference Changes

    When the user changes preferences in the settings screen, it typically has consequences for the app’s behavior. In this snippet, the app checks the preferences settings in onStart() . if there is a match between the setting and the device’s network connection (for example, if the setting is “Wi-Fi” and the device has a Wi-Fi connection), the app downloads the feed and refreshes the display.

    Detect Connection Changes

    The final piece of the puzzle is the BroadcastReceiver subclass, NetworkReceiver . When the device’s network connection changes, NetworkReceiver intercepts the action CONNECTIVITY_ACTION , determines what the network connection status is, and sets the flags wifiConnected and mobileConnected to true/false accordingly. The upshot is that the next time the user returns to the app, the app will only download the latest feed and update the display if NetworkActivity.refreshDisplay is set to true .

    Setting up a BroadcastReceiver that gets called unnecessarily can be a drain on system resources. The sample application registers the BroadcastReceiver NetworkReceiver in onCreate() , and it unregisters it in onDestroy() . This is more lightweight than declaring a in the manifest. When you declare a in the manifest, it can wake up your app at any time, even if you haven’t run it for weeks. By registering and unregistering NetworkReceiver within the main activity, you ensure that the app won’t be woken up after the user leaves the app. If you do declare a in the manifest and you know exactly where you need it, you can use setComponentEnabledSetting() to enable and disable it as appropriate.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    The use of mobile data is on the rise around the world, thanks to more Internet users accessing content from smartphones and tablets.

    Unfortunately for these users, mobile data, per GB, remains much more expensive than its fixed-line competitors – ADSL and fibre- to-the-home.

    This can lead to a nasty bill shock at the end of the month for contract mobile users who use lots of data, or the depletion of data bundles and airtime for those on prepaid.

    This is amplified if mobile data and airtime is being deducted off your account and you are unsure where it is going.

    To stem the flow of data and airtime from your smartphone or tablet, read the pointers below.

    Turn off autoplaying and preloading videos

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Facebook and Twitter’s mobile apps are set to allow video autoplaying by default, while Instagram automatically preloads videos by default.

    While this is not a problem while on a Wi-Fi connection, autoplaying videos on a mobile connection can quickly deplete data. To disable autoplaying videos for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (preloading), read below.

    Facebook mobile app: Enter the Settings menu. Select Account Settings >> Videos and Photos >> Autoplay (under Video Settings section) >> Never Autoplay Videos.

    Twitter mobile app: Enter your Profile and then the Settings menu. Select Video autoplay >> Never play videos automatically.

    Instagram, by default, preloads videos so they start faster for the user. To disable this, and reduce the amount of mobile data you use, open the Instagram mobile app and select your Profile. Open the Options menu >> Cellular Data Use (under the Settings section) >> Use Less Data.

    Turn off Wi-Fi assistants

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Android and iOS devices give users the option automatically switch between mobile and Wi-Fi networks to ensure an online session is not affected by any drops in connectivity.

    If the operating system detects the Wi-Fi connection is patchy, it will automatically switch a user to their cellular data connection – depleting data bundles or airtime while online.

    This smart network selection is called Wi-Fi Assist on Apple iOS 9 devices and is enabled by default.

    To turn off Wi-Fi assist, go to Settings >> Cellular >> Wi-Fi Assist (at the bottom of the menu), and disable it.

    On Android devices, the option is called Auto network switch, or Smart network switch. To disable it, go to Settings >> Wi-Fi >> Options > Advanced >> Smart network switch / Auto network switch.

    Cancel all Wasp subscriptions

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Should you find your airtime disappearing or amounts being billed to your account that you can’t account for, you may have subscribed to a Wasp.

    Since the end of 2013, South Africa’s mobile network providers require premium content subscription services to go through a double opt-in process – but there have been Wasps who trick mobile subscribers into opting in to a subscription service.

    To see whether you have been subscribed to a Wasp, mobile operators allow users to manage content subscriptions through SMS or USSD codes.

    • Cell C: Dial *133*1#. From there you can block all existing and future content billing.
    • MTN: Dial *141*5# and select which services to unsubscribe from.
    • Telkom: Telkom’s Event-based Billing
    • Vodacom: Send SMS containing “STOP ALL” to 30333.

    Check your mobile data usage

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Android and iOS have built-in features to track data consumption, which can be accessed through a device’s Settings menu.

    On an Apple device, go to Settings >> Cellular >> and scroll down to the Cellular Data Usage section.

    On Android devices, go to Settings, then enter the Wireless Networks section. Depending on your device, the data usage tracker will be present, or under the Advanced section of Wireless Networks.

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    Whether because you’re getting Zoom’s “Your connection is unstable” warning or because you need to reduce your network usage to stay under a data cap, there are several strategies you can try to reduce your bandwidth and data usage during Zoom meetings.

    This article applies to: Zoom

    Leave video off when you don’t need it

    For meetings where seeing each other isn’t that important, turning your camera off is the easiest way to reduce the amount of data going in and out of your computer. You can adjust your settings, so you always join meetings with your camera off, and choose to have attendees’ cameras off for meetings you set up.

    Turn off HD video

    Providing video in HD resolution requires significantly more data, so consider turning it off when the quality of the image you’re sending isn’t critical.

    To turn off HD in your Zoom client:

    1. In your desktop Zoom client, click Settings (the gear icon).
    2. Click Video in the left-hand menu.
    3. In the My Video section, uncheck the box beside Enable HD if it is checked.

    When you do screen share, only share as long as absolutely necessary

    Be sure to stop screen sharing when you no longer need to show your screen. Also, request that other users turn off their screen sharing when they are done with their example.

    For details about turning screen sharing on and off, see Share Your Screen on the Zoom website.

    Use online collaborative documents rather than screen sharing

    Certain services, like Box Notes, Office Online Documents, and Google Apps let multiple people open and edit the file at once. These services can use less data than streaming video, while still allowing everyone to see changes as they happen or close to it.

    Mute your audio when not speaking

    While it doesn’t use as much bandwidth as your video, you can also reduce your bandwidth somewhat by muting your audio when you’re not speaking. Use the Mute button in the bottom left corner of the Zoom screen to toggle your audio off and on.

    You might also consider using a phone call to connect to Zoom meeting audio instead of using computer audio within the meeting. The phone numbers to connect to a Zoom session are usually included in the invitation you receive from the host under the heading “Dial by your location.”

    Use the cloud recording option for Zoom meetings

    Faculty and staff hosts who record Zoom sessions can take advantage of Zoom’s cloud recording option. Cloud recordings are directly transferred to Cornell’s Video on Demand service and do not need to be uploaded from your computer. service and do not need to be uploaded from your computer. For more information about cloud recordings, visit Zoom Recording Help.

    Improving your Zoom performance overall

    Limit high-bandwidth activities by others at your location

    Other people using the Internet from your remote location will affect the bandwidth available to your Zoom session. Avoid having others stream video or music, play online games, or upload and download large files, as all of these activities can noticeably impact your Zoom performance.

    Avoid running other data-intensive applications during Zoom sessions

    Improve your overall Zoom client performance by not running other applications during meetings that might also be using a large share of your bandwidth. Examples of data-intensive programs might include streaming video or music sites, or other websites with dynamic content. You can always check your network usage using Activity Monitor on the Mac or Task Manager in Windows to pinpoint which programs are data hogs.

    How to Set Data Limit for Wi-Fi and Ethernet Network in Windows 10

    Recent Windows 10 builds allow you to restrict background data and set data limits for Wi-Fi and Ethernet. This is a useful feature for users who are on a limited data plan.

    Starting with Windows 10 build 17063, you can set data limits and apply background data restrictions to Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections, in addition to cellular connections. An additional option was added to the Data usage page of the Settings page. This is useful when you are using a PC with cellular connectivity or a metered ethernet network connection. Using it, you can adjust your data usage to your budget and needs.

    To set data limit for Wi-Fi and Ethernet in Windows 10, do the following.

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Go to Network & Internet > Data Usage.
    3. On the right, select the desired connection under Show settings for.
    4. Click on the Set limit button under Data limit.Note: Starting with Windows 10 build 18956, you will need to click on the Status category on the left side, click on the Data usage button for the network you want on the right, and then click on the Enter limit button under Data usage.
    5. In the next dialog, specify the limit value and click on the Save button.

    Once you set the data usage limit, you can later edit or remove it. Here’s how it can be done.

    Edit Data Limit for Wi-Fi and Ethernet Connections in Windows 10

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Go to Network & Internet > Data Usage.
    3. On the right, select the desired connection under Show settings for.
    4. Click on the Edit limit button under Data limit.
    5. In the next dialog configure the limits according to your requirements.
    6. Note: Starting with Windows 10 build 18956, you will need to click on the Status category on the left side, click on the Data usage button for the network you want on the right, and then click on the Enter limit button under Data usage.

    Finally, it is easy to remove the data usage limit for a network.

    To Remove Data Usage Limit in Windows 10,

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Go to Network & Internet > Data Usage.
    3. On the right, select the desired connection under Show settings for.
    4. Click on the Remove limit button under Data limit.
    5. Confirm the operation and you are done.

    Also, it is possible to limit the background data transfer for Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections too. Windows Update has always used Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) to download updates. In addition to updates, modern Windows versions use background data transfer to update and install Store apps. Let’s see how to limit background data for Wi-Fi and Ethernet.

    Limit Background Data for Wi-Fi and Ethernet

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Go to Network & Internet.
    3. Click the Data Usage category on the left.
    4. On the right, set the data limit to “Always” under Background data.

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    Author: Sergey Tkachenko

    Sergey Tkachenko is a software developer who started Winaero back in 2011. On this blog, Sergey is writing about everything connected to Microsoft, Windows and popular software. Follow him on Telegram, Twitter, and YouTube. View all posts by Sergey Tkachenko

    Windows 11 includes a feature that allows you to set Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections as metered to limit the background data usage of the system and apps. Usually, this feature comes in handy to conserve data and avoid going over the internet limits, such as when using a mobile hotspot or capped internet connection.

    If you enable the metered connection feature on a wireless or wired internet connection, Windows 11 and the Microsoft Store will stop downloading updates for the system and apps, some apps like OneDrive will pause syncing files and other content to the cloud, and certain apps may not operate correctly until the restriction lifted as they may rely on an internet connection.

    Regardless of the connection available on the computer, Windows 11 makes it easy to configure them as metered connections using the Settings app.

    In this Windows 11 guide, we will walk you through the steps to enable and disable the feature to make Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections metered.

    How to enable Wi-Fi metered connection on Windows 11

    To make a Wi-Fi connection metered on Windows 11, use these steps:

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Click on Network & internet.

    Click the Wi-Fi page on the right side.

    Source: Windows Central

    Click the network properties setting for the active connection.

    Source: Windows Central

    Quick note: If the adapter isn’t connected to a network, you won’t see this option.

    Turn on the Metered connection toggle switch.

    Source: Windows Central

    Once you complete the steps, the wireless connection will be set as metered, saving data to help you avoid going over the data cap.

    A metered connection only applies to the current connection, not the network adapter. If you connect to another capped network, you must also set it as metered. Otherwise, Windows 11 and apps will have unlimited access to the internet. Also, while updates will not download when a connection is set as metered, Windows 11 will still try to download critical updates that might be essential to the system operation.

    Disable Wi-Fi metered connection

    To disable Wi-Fi metered connection on Windows 11, use these steps:

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Click on Network & internet.

    Click the Wi-Fi page on the right side.

    Source: Windows Central

    Click the network properties setting.

    Source: Windows Central

    Turn off the Metered connection toggle switch.

    Source: Windows Central

    After you complete the steps, the connection will return to normal operation, allowing Windows 11 and apps to have unlimited access to the internet.

    How to enable Ethernet metered connection on Windows 11

    To make an Ethernet connection metered, use these steps:

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Click on Network & internet.

    Click the Ethernet page on the right side.

    Source: Windows Central

    Turn on the Metered connection toggle switch.

    Source: Windows Central

    Once you complete the steps, the Ethernet connection will start operating as a metered connection limiting data usage.

    Disable Ethernet metered connection

    To disable metered connection for an Ethernet adapter, use these steps:

    1. Open Settings.
    2. Click on Network & internet.

    Click the Ethernet page on the right side.

    Source: Windows Central

    Turn off the Metered connection toggle switch.

    Source: Windows Central

    After you complete the steps, the wired connection will once again have full access to the internet data.

    More Windows resources

    For more helpful articles, coverage, and answers to common questions about Windows 10 and Windows 11, visit the following resources:

    Looking ahead: What to expect from Surface and Windows in 2022

    2021 was a surprisingly big year for Microsoft, with the introduction of a new version of Windows, the unveiling of a new flagship Surface laptop and major redesign of the Surface Pro, and the 20th anniversary of Xbox. Can we expect 2022 to be on a similar level in regard to huge announcements, changes, and milestones?

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Android comes with a handy feature called — ‘Data Usage‘ that keeps the track of how much mobile data you have used. But the strange thing is, there is no option to clear that data usage stats. So here is a guide on How to clear data usage on Android.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    But first, why clear the data usage?

    Well, there are several reasons to do that. Like, last month I was out on a vacation and did several data recharges within a week. However, since the usage stats adds all the bandwidth, there is no easy way to tell, how much data I used since my last recharge.

    How to Clear Data Usage on Android!

    Well, unfortunately, you can clear data usage only on a rooted device. But, if your phone is not rooted, then there is a workaround for that as well. We’ll come to that later. First, let’s see how to clear data usage if you have root access.

    For Root Users

    In case you have a rooted device, things are pretty simple and straight forward. Start by opening your file explorer. If you don’t have any, install ES file explorer.Next go to /data/system/netstats. Under the netstats folder, delete all files and reboot your device.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    This will clear everything under ‘data usage’.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Read the detailed thread on StackExchange

    For Non-Root Users

    If your device is not rooted, then you can clear the ‘data usage’ natively. But, it cannot be done immediately and instead you have to choose a date when you want to reset the data cycle. Start by turning on your mobile data first (important), then go to System Settings. To do that, pull down the notification drawer and click on the gear icon. Alternatively, you can also go to the App Drawer and click on the gear icon to open System Settings.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Once you are in the Settings page, head over to “Network & Internet”.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    When you are in the Network & Internet page, tap on “Data Usage“.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    On the Data Usage page, tap on “Data Warning & Limit”. This will open additional settings.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Once you are in the Data Warning & Limit page, tap on “App Data Usage Cycle“.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    You will be presented with a Usage cycle reset data pop up. Select today’s data which in my case is 16th. Tap on Set.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Now when you visit the Data Usage page, the system will start Data Usage from today’s data and the statistics should be reset. This is kind of a workaround for resetting data usage.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Alternate method

    To get more control over your data usage, I suggest you try this app called my data manager. It lets you track your data usage. It provides more detailed insight on data usage per app basis and how much bandwidth you spend on a particular day/weeks etc. You can also define limits and even filter mobile data and roaming usage.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on androidHow to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Closing Words

    It’s surprising to see that this option is still not included in the latest build of Android 9. But these methods would definitely work irrespective of what Android device you are using.

    For any queries or issues, let me know in the comments below.

    Unlimited data plans are an endangered species nowadays, so most of us have to watch our limits in order to avoid excess charges on our bill. That’s easy enough when we know how much cellular data we’re using on our smartphones, but becomes problematic when our smartphones eat up our precious megabytes in the background. This doesn’t just happen on Android, but iPhone, too. Here’s how to stop it.

    Recently, a friend asked me for help when he reached 90% of his data usage despite barely using any data. I thought this was surprising because he has an iPhone and iPhones aren’t allowed to do a whole lot in the background. Despite these limitations, apps can still do a fair amount of downloading when they’re not open and regardless of how they’re connected to the internet. In short, you could end up going over your data limits easily without even knowing it, regardless of whether you’re on Android or iPhone. In this post we’re going to look at how to figure out which apps are eating your data unnecessarily and how to stop them. On Android it’s pretty simple, but for iPhone you need to do a little detective work.

    Android

    Tracking which apps use your data is pretty simple. Just install My Data Manager (Free) and allow it to track the data your apps use. At any time, you can open up Data Manager and take a look at how many megabytes (or gigabytes) any app is using. If anything is sucking your data plan dry, make sure that app isn’t running in the background (or just delete it from your phone altogether). Solving the problem is easy so long as you know which app is using up all of your data.

    Father’s Day CBD Bundle

    Send Dad flowers
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    iPhone

    On an iPhone, you can’t track exactly which apps are using your data unless you’re jailbroken . If you are, you can grab iNetUsage ($2) from Cydia and monitor the breakdown. If not, you need to conduct an investigation and find the culprit(s) with some trial and error. Let’s go over a few methods.

    How to Jailbreak Your iPhone: The Always Up-to-Date Guide [iOS 9]

    Jailbreaking is a process that changes little by little with each iOS upgrade. Rather than always…

    Ensure Wi-Fi Is Actually Enabled

    Sometimes high data usage happens because you turned off Wi-Fi and just forgot. When my internet access goes down, I often do this and forget to turn it back on for a week. Fortunately I just don’t use that much data in general, but if I did it could turn into a major problem. Before you spend a bunch of your time investigating the problem, make sure your data settings are actually correct.

    Look at the Apps that Use the Most Battery

    On an iPhone, if an app is draining your battery it has a better chance of eating up your data plan as well. Battery-sucking apps run in the background, and there are only a few things background apps can do on an iPhone: use the GPS, play music, and download files. While apps that download files might seem like guilty party, iOS only allows background downloading for a short amount of time. If the app isn’t open on your phone, iOS will shut off its download privileges after about 10 minutes. As a result, you’re probably aware of when an app is downloading something in the background.

    You’re more likely to run into wasted data when you leave a music or location-aware app open in the background. Music apps can play indefinitely, and if they’re streaming that music you can use a lot of data simply by forgetting to stop playback. Location-aware apps use your GPS and may need to download data relevant to that GPS. While it’s unlikely that they’re constantly grabbing new data (e.g. maps or location-based photos), you want to be sure these kind of apps aren’t accessing your location without your knowledge. Fortunately, this is very easy to do. Simply go into the Settings app on your iPhone, tap Privacy (in iOS 6, Location Services in earlier versions), then tap Location Services, and peruse the list of apps. Most apps will just have an ON and OFF switch, but some will have a purple solid, purple outline, or gray solid arrow next to them. A purple arrow means the app has used your location recently, a gray arrow indicates the app has used your location in the last 24 hours, and a purple outline arrow indicates the app is using a geofence (meaning that it’s waiting to carry out an event when you’re in a certain location, like when the Reminders app provides a location-based reminder). The purple solid and outline arrows are the ones that cause the most trouble, so if you see them, try quitting those apps to see if your data usage decreases.

    Check Your Bill

    Most cellular providers keep detailed records of your data usage, even if it’s only temporary. Whether or not your bill will retain enough detail to tell you what you were doing with that data is another story, but it will tell you how much you used on a specific day and time. In the event you forgot about a large download, or you retrieved a lot of data that you thought was over Wi-Fi, you may be able to pinpoint the cause by knowing exactly when it happened.

    Additionally, you may be able to find out more detailed information by calling your cellular provider directly. They may have access to more information than you, and they may be able to add something called “detailed billing” to your plan. This service often costs money but provides additional information about your data usage so you know what’s going on. That said, signing up for this service means you’re paying your provider to keep a record of what you do on your smartphone that they may retain longer than the data they already keep about you. Consider whether that matters to you before signing up.

    Employ a Data Monitoring App and Use It Strategically

    If you’d prefer to avoid your cellular provider, you can also use a data monitoring app to keep an eye on your overall usage. This won’t tell you which app is causing trouble, but it will tell you when a lot of data was used. Just like you can with your bill (as discussed in the previous section), you can use the date and time information to try and pinpoint what happened when large amounts of data was consumed. Sure, this isn’t a definitive method but it might help you zero in on the culprit(s).

    The Best Data Usage Tracker for iPhone

    The iPhone isn’t lacking in data usage trackers, but many of them offer few features or do little…

    With lots of data being stored on smartphones of late, there is a rising concern about user privacy. Some apps seek permissions that may not seem necessary to work, while some may ask for network access. If you use an app to store important or sensitive data, it’s best to stop the app from accessing the internet.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    This is to make sure that the app’s data stays offline on your device at all times and is not uploaded to a remote server. Sometimes, it also makes sense to block certain apps and games from accessing the internet in order to stop them from displaying ads. Luckily, it’s quite easy to do this on your Android phone.

    Why Should You Block Apps From Accessing the Internet

    You may use an app to store important documents like your ID cards. The data in that app is sensitive and you would not want it to leave your device. Blocking internet access to the app will ensure that the app cannot upload your data to any other online location.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Another use case might be to play games without interruptions. Some games do not require internet access to play but show you ads via the internet in between gaming sessions. This can get annoying over a while. Blocking internet access would mean the game cannot display ads anymore.

    How to Block Internet Access to Apps on Android

    There are two ways to restrict apps from accessing the internet on your Android phone. Depending on your phone, you can try either of the two methods.

    1. Use In-Built Settings to Block Internet Access

    Some custom skins on Android have an in-built option to disable internet access for apps. Here’s how you can access it.

    Step 1: Open the Settings app on your phone and scroll down to find the Apps option. Tap on it.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 2: Select App Management.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 3: Find the app you want to block internet access. Tap on it.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 4: Now, select the Data usage option.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 5: You will find two toggles here. Toggle them on depending on whether you want to block internet access completely or only via Wi-Fi or Mobile data. You can also choose to disable Background data only.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    The app will no longer have access to an internet connection on your phone.

    While this is the best way to block internet access from apps, this option isn’t present on all phones and versions of Android. Hence, the next best solution is to use a third-party app that works universally on all phones.

    2. Use the NetGuard App

    NetGuard is a free app that you can download from the Play Store. It helps you block internet access to apps on your phone. Here’s how you can do it.

    Step 1: Head to the Play Store on your phone and install the NetGuard app.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 2: Open the app once installed and select I Agree.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 3: All the apps installed on your phone will be listed on the app.

    Step 4: You will see two green icons listed next to each app. The first icon denotes Wi-Fi and the second denotes Mobile Data.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 5: Tap on the respective icons next to the app you want to disable internet access to. If you want to disable internet access completely, tap on both icons.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 6: The icons will now turn red.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 7: Tap on the switch at the top-left corner to enable NetGuard and block internet access to the selected app.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 8: Select OK in the prompt. NetGuard essentially works like a VPN to block internet access to certain apps. So, you will need to add NetGuard to the list of VPNs on your phone.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 9: You will now see a connection request telling you that NetGuard is trying to set up a VPN connection. Tap on OK.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 10: Another prompt will now pop up asking you to disable battery optimization. This is step is optional but it will ensure NetGuard stays active at all times. Select OK.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 11: In the screen that opens, tap on Not optimized and change it to All apps.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 12: Scroll till you find NetGuard in the list of apps. Tap on it.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 13: Select Don’t optimize and then tap on Done.

    How to restrict background data for metered wi-fi networks on android

    Step 14: Use the back button on the top-left corner to go back into NetGuard.

    You will now see that NetGuard is active and the selected app does not have internet access. You can verify that NetGuard is active by looking for the key icon in the notification center indicating that a VPN is active.

    Block Internet Access and Keep Your Data Secure

    Use either of the two methods and block apps from accessing the internet on your Android phone. These methods ensure that your data stays on your device till you consciously want to move it.

    Last updated on 14 March, 2022

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