iOS 13 Will Finally Gain a Feature That Android Has Had Since 2016

Iphone Lte Modem Cell Service Credit: AllThingsHow
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Do you hit your monthly cellular data limit quicker than expected? Your apps may be to blame. But don’t worry, because Apple is introducing a new data-saving feature in the next version of iOS.

The feature, appropriately named Low Data Mode, should help users avoid going over their data cap before the month is over.

In other words, it appears to be a data-based analog to the existing Low Power Mode. That means you’ll quickly be able to activate Low Data Mode when you’re running low on cellular data without having to individually disable Background App Refresh or other settings for all of your apps.

While the feature is new to iOS, smartphone veterans may find it fairly familiar. That’s because Android has had a similar option since Android 7.0, which was released back in March 2016. Android’s Data Saver mode actually informs third-party apps to make several changes when it’s enabled.

How to Turn on Low Data Mode in iOS 13

Low Data Mode is accessible by navigating to:

  1. Settings.
  2. Cellular.
  3. Cellular Data Options.
  4. Switch the toggle next to Low Data Mode to the ON position.

It isn’t exactly clear how Apple’s Low Data Mode works, but according to beta tester reports, the feature appears to suspend background app activity when a user isn’t connected to a Wi-Fi network.

Of course, if Low Data Mode takes a cue from its Android counterpart, it could also “force” apps to go into their own low-data modes — which may include reducing image quality, disabling auto-playing videos, compressing data, and triggering “lite” data experiences.

Apple has made some other changes related to data in iOS 13. For example, the firm says that it has cut the size of apps and app updates by up to 50 percent in many cases. That means you should save data when downloading or updating apps when you don’t have a Wi-Fi network readily available.

And while it’s not really aimed at saving power, Low Data Mode could presumably help users get the most out of their device’s battery life. Background App Refresh and other background app processes are notorious for being data hogs.

Low Data Mode is currently available in the iOS 13 betas. The final public release of iOS 13 will launch sometime in the fall. Get more life out of your battery here.

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