facetime data usage

Let’s Answer How Much Data Facetime Use


“How much data does FaceTime use?” is a question that often arises for Apple device users. FaceTime has revolutionized video calling, making it easier than ever to connect with friends, family, or colleagues. 

Whether it’s a heartwarming video call with loved ones or a quick audio catch-up with a colleague, FaceTime remains a versatile and data-efficient tool for staying connected in today’s digital age. 

So, let’s delve into the specifics of FaceTime data usage. We’ll also shed light on:  

  • The factors that determine data consumption during your calls.  
  • Understanding why FaceTime’s data usage is crucial to optimise your data plan. 
  • Also finding the ideal data-only SIM and how to get non-stop data with no data caps or throttling.  

Let’s break down the numbers and explore how FaceTime impacts your data allowance. 

Does Facetime Use Data?

The answer is simple: yes, it does require data. The second question is, how much data does Facetime use? If you’re calling your loved ones on Facetime consistently, you could be chewing all GBS in a hurry.

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These days, soaking up too much data and finishing your data package earlier than before is a major concern for most. No need to stress! We’ve got you covered. In this blog, we’ll tell you a few insider tips on knowing the amount of data consumed by Facetime and how to continue Facetime convos without draining all data.   

Interesting Read: How much Data does Zoom Use?

How Much Data does Facetime Use?

There’s no doubt that Facetime relies on data for video convos. However, does it consume a lot? It depends on what you call a lot. For instance, if you subscribe to a data package of 80GBs, Facetime consuming 4GBs or 5GBs monthly won’t hurt you much. On the contrary, if you subscribe to a data plan of 10GBs, 4GB is a lot.  

Based on calculations, Facetime requires over 3MB of data every minute. It means you’re consuming around 200MB per hour. So, according to maths, if you use Facetime continuously for 20 hours, it will eat up 4GB of data. However, Facetime isn’t the only app you’re using on your smartphone. There are a lot of other data-consuming tasks you may be involved in, like streaming, listening to music, browsing, socialising, using navigation apps, etc.  

How to see Facetime Call Data Usage? 

The calculations shown above, and the figures mentioned are not exact and based on approximate estimates. Facetime data consumption may vary based on the call duration, device, network strength, and usage settings.  

Single Call

If you want to know how many MBs a Facetime call has consumed, enter the contacts app once you’ve completed the call. Hit the ‘All’ option and then tap on ‘Recent’. You’ll see a list of recent Facetime calls; the most recently ended will be on top. 

Whether you want to check the MBs used for the last call or any call from the list, just tap on the information icon (small i) in front of the contact. In the next tab, you’ll find all the related information about the call, including whether it was made or received, the time and date, the duration of the call, etc.  

The consumed data during the length of the call will be displayed beside the duration. The MBS used will be shown in parenthesis, which will look like this.  

To see how much data does Facetime use for an individual call, follow these steps.  

  • Open the App and go to ‘Recents’ 
  • Tap on the ‘i’ next to the contact you had a conversation using the App.  
  • If you’re on mobile data, the amount consumed will be displayed next to the timestamp of the call.  

How to See Overall Data Usage?

Want to view the total data usage of Facetime on your iPhone? You can do it easily by following these simple steps.  

  • Enter the ‘Settings’ menu.  
  • Within Settings, select ‘Cellular’. 
  • You’ll see a list of apps. Here, scroll down to Facetime and tap on it to see how much the app has consumed.  

Note: ‘Current Period’ never resets on its own every month. To refresh it, scroll to the bottom of the Cellular menu and tap Reset Statistics.  

How to Reduce FaceTime Data Usage?

For people who love connecting with their friends, family, colleagues, etc., and use Facetime regularly, it can be a real data hog – especially if you’re using it while connected to mobile data. Want to know how to reduce data usage while continuing with fun chats and daily gossip? Stay put! 

You can lower the data usage when using Facetime in two ways. The first is to make calls when connected to the Wi-Fi, while the second is to turn off video while on mobile data. First thing first, let’s start with calling on Wi-Fi.  

Related: How much Data does Netflix use and how to reduce it?

Facetime Calls over Wi-Fi

Every now and then, you keep hearing or reading that the best way to conserve data is to do all data-intensive tasks while on Wi-Fi. Most of the Wi-Fi connections are unlimited and those which aren’t, still give you a huge allowance to be used in a month, unlike mobile data.  

So, while connected to the Wi-Fi, any activity like Facetime calling doesn’t require data from your mobile internet. Interestingly, Facetime is aware of it and prefers Wi-Fi for calling. When you’re connected to Wi-Fi at your home, office, café, or anywhere and want to make a call using Facetime, it will use the Wi-Fi connection as default. 

However, suppose the Wi-Fi signals become weak during the call. In that case, the intelligent App from Apple will switch to mobile data so that the connectivity isn’t lost, and you keep enjoying your conversations.  

To ensure that the app only consumes Wi-Fi data and doesn’t pull from your mobile data, you can set it to Wi-Fi only by following these steps.  

  • Enter ‘Settings’. 
  • Go to ‘Cellular’. 
  • Scroll down to Facetime and toggle it off. 

It is important to note that after you’ve changed the settings, you’ll make and receive Facetime calls only when connected to Wi-Fi and not on mobile data.  

Turn off Facetime Video Calling

Now, you must know that video calling requires large data quantity. However, does Facetime audio use data? Yes, it does. However, it is not as much as video calling. In fact, it uses considerably less data and saves a lot, especially for mobile data users.  

Making an audio call on Facetime is like calling someone using cellular minutes from the default phone app. If you’re in an area with poor signal coverage and have access to Wi-Fi, Facetime can be of real help as it helps you stay connected with the world easily.  

If you receive a call from someone on Facetime and want to talk but not appear in the video – to save data or for any other reason – you can turn off the video. Here’s how to do it.  

  • During the call, open the Facetime menu by tapping on the screen.  
  • Swipe up the menu to show more options.  
  • Tap on ‘Camera Off’ to turn off the camera and, ultimately, the video. 
  • Your call will go on as usual but turn to audio-only.  
  • Also, you can still see the person you’re talking to in case their camera is turned on. This will consume your data. To save data, you can request them to turn off their camera to save cellular data.  

Facetime audio calls consume around 2MBs every minute. This way, you’ll save a lot of your data, i.e., 30%, and continue to enjoy seamless communication.  

Facetime Vs. WhatsApp Vs. Skype

WhatsApp has become one of the most common calling apps offering video calling functionality. Besides WhatsApp, Skype – the pioneer in voice and video calling – has also held its place in the market.  

Facetime comes preloaded on Apple devices and boasts a strong backing, giving it a massive user base. So, all three apps compete for easy interaction and continue improving their features, interface, security, and user experience to capture the market and become the most prominent stakeholders in online calling.  

It is pertinent to note that using any or all of these apps on mobile data results in significant data consumption. However, when connected to the Wi-Fi, you can continue using these apps with no worries.

Data Consumption on Each App

We’ve tried calculating the data used by WhatsApp, Skype, and Facetime by making video calls of the same lengths to find out which uses the least amount. We made three video calls of four minutes on each app. And surprisingly, Apple-backed Facetime consumed the least amount of data.

During the test, a four-minute video call was made using Facetime, and it used only 8.8MB of data. On the other hand, a video call of the same duration from Skype consumed 12.3 MB, and WhatsApp pulled 12.74MB from cellular data. The amount of data used was calculated as an average after making three calls from each app. It could vary based on the network, 4G or 5G, signal strength, location, and devices involved. 

Video quality

The quality of video on WhatsApp and Skype wasn’t excellent, and we also noticed choppy video at the receiver’s end. While on Facetime, it was better than its rivals until the receiver switched to mobile data. We noticed pixelated video with considerable lagging as soon as the receiver turned to mobile data. Despite a slightly better call quality, Facetime required less data than the other two.

Switch to Talk Home Mobile for More Data

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Platinum 5G

You’ll rarely see PAYG plans giving more data than Platinum 5G. This package covers all your monthly online needs, and we bet you’ll still be left with a large data quantity at the end of the month. At only £35, Platinum 5G gives you 150GB of blistering fast internet, unlimited calls, and texts to stay connected 24/7.  

The best thing about all these plans is that they come with Locked-in UK prices for 2023. What does it mean? It means that Talk Home’s prices won’t increase until the end of the year. Apart from fixed prices, you get the most comprehensive coverage throughout the country, no data capping, no long-term contracts, and no credit checks. Want to enjoy freedom and affordability? Order your Talk Home SIM now! 


Facetime is a wonderful App by Apple for its users to enjoy video and audio calls on iPhones and iPads. It requires a solid data connection to work for you to interact with your loved ones. Regarding how much data Facetime uses, compared to other market leaders in video calling like WhatsApp, Skype and Google Duo, it requires less data per minute. Moreover, its video quality is also better than its rivals.  

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