Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) Auto Play is possibly eating away the mobile data limit of the smartphones faster, thus increasing the mobile bills of the users. If the users skip to change the default setting in the Facebook, which automatically start streaming videos in the News Feed Window, their data plan will be over early.
Change default Settings
It is not very complicated to change the setting across the OS platforms. The iPhone users need to select “Facebook” in “Settings” and then choose “Wi-Fi only” option instead of “Auto Play.” Similarly in Android, the user needs to click “App settings” and then close “Auto Play” and activate “only on Wi-Fi or off.”
For the PC users, this might not be a concerning feature, but the problem is grave for those relying on the limited data plan offered by many satellite internet providers such as Dish network, EchoStar’s (SATS) HughesNet and others.
A consumer site MoneySavingExpert.com noted slew of complaints from the users, who are blaming Facebook auto play feature for their excessive data related charges. Within the Auto-play feature, video starts playing silently and after sometime it starts playing the sound. The default setting will automatically start playing the video on Wi-Fi, LTE or 3G unless changed.
The Auto play feature was launched by the social networking company in March calling out to the companies to pay for the promoted videos that will by default auto-play in users’s news feed.
Facebook not the only culprit
Recent ice bucket challenge videos trending across the world are seen as one of the reasons for the rise data charges. These videos total around 2.4 million on the social networking site, according to a report from BBC. These videos invite uploading, likes and comments from over 28 million users, according to a report from BBC. This number excludes the videos without liking, commenting or uploading their own.
It may be possible that Facebook is not the only one pushing the data usage of viewers, but as of now, it is being seen as the obvious culprit.
Popular apps like Instagram and Vine also contribute in eating away the data of the mobile users. In the first half, Instagram posted an increase of 25% in the usage, whereas Vine usage surged 27%. A report from GlobalWebIndex noted that the Snapchat, which allows sending videos over 3G and 4G network, registered the maximum growth in usage.