Late Night AT&T Internet Media Net iPhone Data Usage

by Tammy

If you have viewed your iPhone Data Usage on AT&T and noticed your phone seems to be active while you are asleep or no longer using it for the night, you’re not alone. Many people have wondered about these mysterious late night Internet/Media Net usages. Since this data phantom appears to be using precious space in your monthly Data Plan, it’s obviously worth looking into.

As it turns out, the "mystery" could actually be your own data usage throughout the day or week that took a little longer to be displayed.

On the AT&T website, it says on the records usage page, “There are delays in reporting and processing data records. It may take up to two to five days for airtime usage on the AT&T wireless network to show up in any Data ‘Used’ category. Additional delays may occur due to technical difficulties. Further delays may apply to roaming usage, which is based on usage records received from other carriers. A delay of a minimum of two to ten days for roaming usage is usual and up to 60 days or longer is possible. During the time your invoice is being processed, you may not be able to view your usage or you may experience additional delays in reporting of usage. This usage information is only an estimate and, regardless of what is shown, your next invoice will be determined by the information contained in our billing system, not this usage information. Hawaii Text/Data Users: The time stamp for your unbilled data usage may be off by up to 4 hours.”

Due to the airtime usage delays, what looks like hidden activity on the iPhone is simply the system grouping earlier Internet/Media Net usage.

Because we wondered about it, too, we gave them a call and one nice AT&T representative suggested that it might also be open apps running in the phone’s background. This wasn’t the case for us, but, still, it was a good tip for learning how to close open apps on the iPhone.

To turn off open apps, follow the three easy steps below every night before you go to bed, then on the next day or the next (depending on the airtime delays), go to the AT&T website and check your data usage to see if it makes a difference for you.

Step 1: Double-tap the home button on your iPhone to reveal your most recently used apps on the bottom of the screen. If you have iOS 7 or higher, the apps will be in the middle of the screen.

Apple iPhone Step 1

Step 2: Press and hold one of the revealed apps until the app icons begin to wiggle. (On iOS 7+, put your finger on the app you are wanting to close, then slide it upwards; skip Step 3.)

Apple iPhone Step 2

Step 3: As the icons are wiggling, you will notice a red circle with a line at the top left of each icon. Click that circle for each app until all are gone. This simple action will close open apps running in the iPhone’s background, much like closing a Windows program by clicking the red X.

It is definitely a nuisance to have to do these 3 steps (now 2 steps for current iOS versions) everyday, but you can decide whether closing the apps affects your Data Plan or not. Disabling “Fetch New Data” in your Mail Settings (go to Settings, then tap Mail, Contacts, Calendars and select Fetch New Data to switch Push to Off) can also help to keep your phone asleep when you are.