Hotspot Data Limit: What You Need to Know About

Anyone who uses the internet regularly is familiar with mobile data hotspots. You’re likely to find a local hotspot when you’re out in public, like at a mall, airport, hotel, restaurant, or coffee shop. Depending on the owner, this hotspot may come free of charge, or you may have to pay a small fee to access it. It helps you browse the web without using your mobile data. But did you know that you can set up your hotspot data limit? 

Moreover, you can set limits to ensure users stay within a determined figure. This article will teach you the basics of hotspot data and how to limit hotspot data usage.

Table of Contents

How Do You Set up a Hotspot Data Limit

Android Hotspot

To set the data usage on Android, follow these steps:

1. First, open “Settings” >> “Dual SIM & Mobile Networks”

2. Select ‘Data Management

3. Select the gear ‘⚙’ icon to create a data usage plan

4. Open “Data Plan”>> “Monthly Data Plan.”

5. Input the data limit

6. Activate your data limit plan

How Do You Set up Data Limit on iPhone?

iPhone Hotspot

Controlling data limits on iOS is different. There are several strategies you can use.

  1. First, disable or customize Background App Refresh
  2. Switch off Wi-Fi assist
  3. Disable mobile data for iPhone apps
  4. Switch off push notifications for apps
  5. Switch on low data mode
  6. Deactivate iCloud Drive Backup
  7. Please turn off your mobile data whenever you’re not using it
Businessman working with a cloud computing diagram

Businessman working with a cloud computing diagram

How Much Data Does Mobile Hotspot Use?

It depends on the number of devices connected to it, how long they stay connected, and how you use the data. Therefore, if your hotspot has multiple devices like laptops, tablets, and smartphones connected, you’ll probably expend a lot of data, especially if they’re all streaming simultaneously.  

The same principle applies to how you use the data. Web conferences (like Zoom meetings) can use anywhere between 540MB to 1.62GB per hour. However, it depends on the quality of the call.

Functions like streaming and gaming also consume more data than other activities like browsing social media or checking e-mails. 

Online zoom conference

Online zoom conference

Can I Use a Mobile Hotspot Without Data?

Yes. Through Wi-Fi tethering, you can convert your smartphone into an internet router. Follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Open “Settings”>>”Wireless & Networks” 
  2. Click the “Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot” option.
  3. Click the button beside that option to turn it on.
  4. Using a different device, search for the Wi-Fi access point, or switch on the Wi-Fi to scan for nearby wireless networks.
  5. Click on the other device’s wireless connection name and type the password.

How Much Data Does a Movie Use on Hotspot?

Movie buffs may wonder, how much data does a movie used on a hotspot? It would help if you had roughly 2.5 to 7.5 megabits per second (Mbps) to stream HD content on mobile. However, the average film can take up to 1GB to 3GB per hour. 

Streaming movies on SD quality minimize data use. It, therefore, cuts it back to 1GB of data every hour. If you’re streaming films in 4K or Ultra HD, you’ll use a much larger volume of data, about 7GB per hour.  

What Can You Do to Ensure You Get Maximum Value From the Hotspot

Monitor Monthly Data Consumption

Keep an eye on your monthly data usage. It’ll give you valuable insights into the apps that use the most data. In addition, it will help you minimize consumption on the biggest spenders.

Stream During Low-Traffic Hours

Download speeds are slower during certain hours when many people use the same network. For example, most people like streaming Netflix between 5 PM-9 PM, which is when networks get congested.

Person starting download

Person starting download

Go For Lower Resolutions

The higher the resolution, the greater the data consumption. Moreover, HD and SD quality consume less data, which helps you reduce usage. 

Can Your Hotspot Run Out If You Have Unlimited Data?

When you run out of hotspot data, you must pay more to remain connected. However, what about unlimited data plans? The good news is your hotspot can only run out of an unlimited data plan. Nevertheless, it can get subjected to data throttling, which means you’ll stream content at much lower speeds. 

How Do I Limit Hotspot Usage

Use a Data Manager

Data managing apps like DataMan can help iOS users limit their data usage on their iPhones and iPads. Moreover, Android users have many options, like My Data Manager, Data Counter Widget, and GlassWire Data Usage Monitor.


Is a Hotspot Free?

If your phone has, the feature enabled, creating a hotspot shouldn’t cost you anything. However, if other devices connect to your hotspot, the cost will vary depending on your network and mobile data plans.   

Does a Hotspot Have a Limit?

Hotspots aren’t unlimited. In addition, all data plans come with a cap on the amount of data you can use as a mobile hotspot. 

Can I Increase My Hotspot Data Limit?

Yes. If your hotspot data usage exceeds your monthly limit, you can pay for the extra data you’ll use. 

Wifi hotspot icon

Wifi hotspot icon


Mobile hotspots are convenient, helping you out in a pinch when you don’t have access to your mobile data.

Their ability to connect multiple devices on one network makes them incredibly versatile.

Furthermore, mobile hotspots consume more data than other types of networks. Therefore, as with all things, sensible use can go a long way. 

Setting limits will save you money and enhance your browsing experience. It will allow you to get the maximum value from your data plan.

Therefore, you can make the most of your mobile hotspot data using a combination of data managing apps, regular monitoring of your usage, and small but helpful measures like streaming content on SD quality.

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