Netflix cellular data usage

Netflix adds mobile data controls

Netflix is a popular service in many countries, due to the ease with which it provides access to a wide range of movies and TV programmes. But the problem with video content is that it consumes a lot of data – an issue that has the potential to land users with sizable bills.

As mobile data use increases, mobile networks have become less generous with their allowances. In order to help manage this potential conflict, Netflix have today launched what they are terming ‘cellular data controls’.

Essentially, the US company is adding a function to its mobile apps which allows video quality to be easily controlled. Although reducing the quality of content is not ideal, it can mean being able to watch more before any data limits are reached.

The mobile data controls are available to Netflix customers around the world. By default, a bitrate setting of approximately 600 kilobytes per second is used, which allows roughly three hours of video to be watched on the service.

Using the ‘Unlimited’ option, it is possible for anyone with an uncapped tariff (or those happy to meet the cost of exceeding their data allowance) to disable the controls, ensuring that content is played at the best available quality.