New Data Saver feature will help you save precious mobile data [Diving into Android N]

by: Jimmy WestenbergMarch 9, 2016
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Android N data saver-AA

Android already does a pretty good job at making sure you don’t go over your monthly data allotment. Users have been able to set a cellular data limit from the settings menu for some time, but now in Android N, there’s a new feature that will let you take it one step further.

Note: Be sure to check out our Diving Into Android N series for more coverage!

If you happen to have a small data plan or if it’s just the end of the month and you’re running low on precious gigabytes, background application data consumption might have been a problem for you in the past. So if you don’t have access to a Wi-Fi connection all day and don’t want your device using a bunch of data while you’re not using your phone, this new feature is for you. It’s called Data Saver (no, not that data saver), and it’s available in the Data Usage section of the new-and-improved settings menu. When you flip the switch, Data Saver will block background data usage for your entire device. It’ll also allow the OS to tell other applications to use less data in the foreground wherever possible as well.

Data Saver screenshot

If you don’t want all apps to be affected by this change, there’s a fix for that. You’ll be able to easily whitelist applications from Data Saver to allow background data usage.

This isn’t the biggest change we’ve seen in Android N so far, but it’s a little one that will surely help some folks save lots of data each month. If you’re interested in getting more details on Data Saver, head to the Android Developers link below.

  • “Precious gigabytes”
    Fucking first world! Here I am in Brazil abusing of all data saving capabilities to survive with my overpriced 150 megabytes, lol. I guess Android N will be my best friend once I get it.

    • Raul Andrei

      Romania isn’t a first world country and I have cheap data. 3GB, unlimited calls and messages for 9.60€. And this is with the biggest carrier. I could get unlimited data and everything with another carrier for only 5€. Guess we’re lucky.

      • Wouter

        Holy damn. You’re lucky, indeed. Here, in The Netherlands, we pay ~25 euros a month for 5GB and 100 calls + messages. Cheapest on the market with 4G and “lots” of data.

        • Da_James

          Don’t forget he’s paid a maximum of 15.000$ a year, so that scales as well.

          • Raul Andrei

            15000? That’s a dream. On a decent job you can make 9000 per year.

        • HobgoblinTruth

          In here Finland we pay less than 25 euros from unlimited 4G + everything else. A lot of people use a lot… I know a guy who uses 100GB or more every month.

      • Uh, well, shit. I guess I’ll just go ignorant and say it’s a European thing to make things work.

        Actually, no. It’s not a third world problem, it’s a Brazil problem. Corruption and absurd taxes that do nothing but ruin economy are constantly blocking progress, to a point in which carriers aren’t *allowed* to give you a better offer. I mean, a lot of the countries around it have better data plans that don’t cost your soul.

  • Nice! This should be especially handy for Project Fi users, and anyone else on similar plans. I’m already wishing Android N was complete and ready for consumer use 😛🤓

  • sjesudasan

    Hi Jimmy, Does turning on the data saver option leave an always on notification in the notification bar?

    • Gus Lipkin

      It has a statusbar icon. No notification. You can’t turn the icon off.

  • aaloo

    Welcome android to 2007 :)

  • Cakefish

    I have unlimited mobile 4G data. Recently upgraded my tariff :)

  • Leif Shantz

    In Canada we get charged through the nose for cell phone plans. $85 gets you unlimited talk, text and 500 MB of data and you can get a high end phone with the plan.