how much data does youtube use?
|YouTube Video Quality||Data Used per Minute||How long 1GB Data will Last|
|144p||1.90 MB||9 hours|
|240p||2.70 MB||6 hours 30 Minutes|
|360p||4.40 MB||4 hours|
|480p||7.70 MB||2 hours, 21 minutes|
|720p HD||14.50 MB||1 hour, 17 minutes|
|1080p HD||27.61 MB||Less than 40 minutes|
I have paired all six YouTube video quality modes and how long 1GB of data will last on each one. The values in the column showing how long 1GB data will last on YouTube are approximated.
YouTube, a Google-owned video platform, has grown to become a haven of video content on almost any subject today. It is the most popular streaming platform, and I am optimistic you have found yourself on YouTube at one time or another. If you haven’t, you have no idea the amazing stuff you are missing.
If you are a regular visitor on YouTube, or you are a vlogger, or like me who visits YouTube when I am bored or need to learn something new excitingly, it would not be wrong to know how much data does YouTube use.
The educating, entertaining, and unique content uploaded on the platform (every minute, YouTube records over 500 hours of video upload) amasses over 1 billion views daily. The platform’s design gets you hooked on it and makes it seem not easy to pull out. I usually exceed the time I often allocate for watching YouTube cause the moment I have watched the video I came from, I see another fascinating one. I keep watching until my network provider reminds me my data is almost exhausted.
As I promised earlier on, this article reveals how much data YouTube uses. So, if you are like me that join over 30 million daily visitors on YouTube or intend to start making use of the platform, you will find this article very helpful.
You probably have your monthly data plan ready and looking for how to effectively incorporate YouTube, so you do not have to purchase a monthly plan twice a month. Understanding how much data does YouTube use will be of immense benefit to you.
Without further ado, let’s dive into the main deal of this article.
How Much Data Does YouTube Use in an Hour?
For clarity, I will be using hourly time frames as a metric system to determine how much data YouTube uses. It is important to note that the amount of data YouTube consumes depends on the quality of the YouTube video. By implication, the YouTube video quality you are watching videos at determines how much data YouTube uses.
The amount of data that YouTube uses when watching a video of 144p quality, which is the lowest, is 114MB in an hour while watching videos at the highest quality, 1080p would consume 1.6GB in an hour.
If you are wondering what YouTube video quality is, I have it explained below. It is quintessential to know what YouTube video quality is and its impacts on how much data YouTube uses.
YouTube Video Quality
YouTube video quality refers to the screen resolution of videos on YouTube. Most times, YouTube cam automatically adjust the quality of the video a user is watching depending on viewing conditions. Nonetheless, users can manually change the quality of the YouTube video they are watching.
On the platform, users get to choose between six different video quality modes. from the lowest quality to the highest, the YouTube video quality modes include:
- 720p HD
- 1080p HD
Each of the video quality modes impacts how much data YouTube uses differently. Someone who watches YouTube videos at 144p quality would experience lesser data consumption levels than the user watching videos at 1080p HD video quality.
You can switch between these video quality modes. I often watch videos in a high-quality mode when the video contains images, graphics, charts, and other important information that I need to see. If a video does not have valuable information on display, I watch it at the lowest quality possible.
You can change the YouTube video quality for a particular video or decide to set a rate that all videos should display. The latter is a cost-effective way to make use of YouTube. It becomes very beneficial when you have a projection of how many videos you need to watch and the amount of data you are willing to use.
I have provided two guides to help you change the quality of a video while watching it or setting a certain video quality in which you would like to watch all videos.
How to Change YouTube Video Quality for a Video
Seeing that the quality of a video is what determines how much data YouTube uses. You may need to change the quality of a video to save your data. To change the quality of a YouTube video, follow the steps below:
- In the YouTube video player, locate the Settings icon or three dotted points. Click on the icon, and you will see options depending on the device you are using. Locate “Quality” and click on it.
- After clicking on “Quality”, you should see the video quality already set to ‘Auto’. You will also see other options to choose from, including all the YouTube video quality modes I have outlined before.
- The Auto option will show you the quality of the video.
- You can select the video quality mode you would like to watch the video in either lower to save your data consumption or higher video quality.
- Once you click on your desired video quality, allow the video to re-load, and it would begin displaying in the quality you have chosen.
To automatically set a video quality for all videos, the steps below will guide you:
- On the YouTube homepage, click on your profile picture.
- Click on “Settings” and then click on “Video Quality Preferences.”
- Next, you will have to set your preferred video quality for both mobile networks and WiFi.
- Choose from any of the YouTube video quality modes listed, and that does it
Back to our primary focus – how much data does YouTube use? I have answered how much data YouTube uses for each YouTube video quality there is. Here goes nothing…
How Much Data Does YouTube Use 144p Hourly?
The 144p video quality mode is the lowest YouTube video quality. The truth is, in this video quality mode, there is poor graphic resolution. You would barely be able to make out the images and motions in the video. I use this resolution when I am only interested in the audio content and not necessarily what’s in the video.
At 144p, YouTube uses 1.90 MB per minute. It means watching videos at 144p on YouTube for an hour will consume 114MB.
How Much Data Does YouTube Use 240p Hourly?
After 144p, the following video quality mode on YouTube is 240p. I do not see it as much of an improvement from 144p. So if you want to watch a low quality for the same reason as I do, you could settle for the 144p mode. Otherwise, the 240p is an excellent choice.
On the 240p video quality, YouTube uses 2.70 MB per minute, translating into 162 MB per hour. That is 48 MB more than the hourly consumption when using the 144p video quality mode.
How Much Data Does YouTube Use 360p Hourly?
The 360p video quality is a move from low-quality YouTube videos to something manageable. By manageable, you can start seeing some graphics with a little more clarity than in 144p and 240p modes.
The amount of data YouTube uses per minute on the 360p quality is 4.40 MB. That means YouTube uses 264 MB per hour on the 360p video quality.
How Much Data Does YouTube Use 480p Hourly?
The 480p video quality is often the recommended video quality mode. Most videos are seemingly at their best when rendered using the 480p video quality. Well, with more quality comes more data exhaustion.
YouTube uses 7.70 MB of data per minute on the 480p mode, translating to 460 MB per hour.
How Much Data Does YouTube Use 720p HD Hourly?
One can watch YouTube videos in High Definition (HD). The video streaming platforms offers two video quality modes that stream videos in HD.
The first is the 720p HD video quality mode.
In a minute, the 720p HD video quality uses 14.50 MB. It is twice the amount of data YouTube uses per minute for videos rendered at 480p mode.
At 720p HD, YouTube consumes 870 MB per hour. If you want to see more, you will have to pay more. And that is what this HD quality mode suggests.
How Much Data Does YouTube Use 1080p HD Hourly?
It is the highest YouTube video quality at the moment. It is the second video quality that allows users to watch videos in HD. I rarely use this mode because the 480p and sometimes 720p HD video quality modes are enough to see whatever I want to see.
The 1080p HD video quality consumes 27.61 MB per minute. Hence, YouTube uses 1,656.6 MB (1.6 GB) of data hourly on the 1080p HD mode.
How Long Will 1GB of Data Last on YouTube
Wondering how long 1GB of data will last when you use it on YouTube? Well, I have provided an overview as regards that. Let this be at the back of your mind that the amount of data YouTube uses is determined by the quality of videos you watch.
And that does it on how much data does YouTube uses. I am sure you found answers to other questions relating to YouTube data consumption. Keep streaming and keep enjoying video content on YouTube.