1 Hour of Data Consumption


1 Hour of Data and Bandwidth Usage


As offices and schools head home, competition for bandwidth is intensifying.  A usually smooth operating home network can be ground to a halt under new data demands. Running multiple video conference calls, streaming binge-worthy TV,  listening to music, and streaming a lecture can cause all parties to suffer extra loading times or lower quality.


To help you understand the most demanding activities, here is a list of the data usage rates for some of the most popular work from home activities.


Work Activities


Email <1 MB an hour.

Email is one of the lightest weight activities you can do.  While usage varies based on attachments, typically, text email takes less than one megabyte per hour.


Web Browsing 60MB an hour.
Browsing the web is a multi-media experience as you read text, graphics, and video.  Each element has to be downloaded, which takes up data.  For typically mixed usage internet browsing, you will use around 60 MB an hour.


Skype 130MB - 700MB an hour.

Skype allows you to connect with your co-workers, friends, and family.  Voice calls require around 130 MB an hour, and video calls require 700 MB an hour.


Google Hangouts 45 MB - 600 MB an hour
Similar to Skype, Google Hangouts offers voice and video calls.  Voice calls are the least data demanding at 45 megabytes per hour, and voice calls higher at 600 megabytes an hour.


Zoom 810 MB an hour

Zoom is popular for its affordable video conferencing solutions.  A typical hour-long Zoom video conference will require 810 MB of data.


Social Activities


Twitter 360 MB an hour.

21 million tweets are penned an hour.  To digest a small fraction of those tweets, you will spend 360 MB an hour scrolling twitter.


Facebook 90 MB to 156 MB an hour

Scrolling through Facebook will cost you 90 to 156 megabytes depending on how much video content you are watching.  Facebook users love videos with over 800 billion daily video views.


Instagram 720 MB an hour

Viewing all of the photos and stories on the Gram is a data-hungry exercise to the tune of 720 MB an hour.




Spotify 40 MB an hour.

Streaming music is one of the least data-hungry entertainment activities you can do at 40 megabytes per hour.


Fortnite100 MB an hour

Online gaming surprisingly requires less bandwidth than most conference calls.  Most online games range from 3 MB to 300 MB.  


YouTube 240 MB to 3 GB an hour

Streaming video is one of the most bandwidth-intensive activities.  With over 1 billion hours of videos watched per day, we have a seemingly unending appetite for video content.  However to feed that appetite, you need 240 MB an hour for SD videos and 3 GB an hour for HD videos.


Netflix  1 GB to 7 GB an hour

With 165 million hours of video watched per day or 494.4 million gigabytes of data per day, Netflix could be the biggest data hog in your household.  To stream one hour of SD content, you will use 1 GB.  For HD that increases to 3 GB and for UHD that rises to 7 GB an hour.


Understanding how your data and bandwidth are being used is the first step in improving performance.