1GB data

1GB of data: How much is it and how long does it last?

In our latest data guide, we explore one of the smallest bundle sizes you can get in 2022. Read on to find out how big 1GB is, how long it can last, and if it’s the right amount for you. 

What is a GB?

A GB (gigabyte) is a way of measuring how much data you have on an electronic device. 1GB is approximately 1,000MB (megabytes). 

The amount of GBs you have on your SIM plan determines how much mobile data you have available each month. 

How much is 1GB of data?

Ofcom’s 2021 report states that phone users (on average) opt for 4.5GB of mobile data for the month. In comparison, a 1GB bundle is a fair bit below average. This is a reflection of how much data we use these days - 1GB simply isn’t enough for most! 

But would 1GB of data be enough for you? Let’s take a look. 

How long does 1GB of data last?

Different tasks on your phone need varying amounts of mobile data to work. Some will only consume a few MBs per hour, whereas other activities will take up a few GBs. 

To know whether 1GB is enough, it’s useful to know (approximately) how much data each smartphone activity would use up per hour. 

Activity

Data consumption

Browsing the internet

60MB per hour

Listening to music

Spotify

10.8MB per hour (24kbps)

43.2MB per hour (96kbps)

72MB per hour (160kbps)

144MB per hour (320kbps)

Watching Netflix

1GB per hour (standard definition)

3GB per hour (HD)

Watching YouTube videos

1.56GB per hour (1080p)

2.7GB per hour (4K)

Browsing social media

90MB per hour (scrolling)

156MB per hour (interacting)

Using Skype / FaceTime

Skype

270MB per hour

 

FaceTime

180MB per hour


The more data-intensive the activity (the bigger the file), the more of your allowance it will eat up. Streaming video content consumes so much due to how large video files are, compared to say, accessing a web page. 

Listening to music, the radio, podcasts, or audiobooks on mobile data is less data-intensive, as the files are smaller, and your mobile data isn’t trying to play video as well as audio. You can control how many MBs you lose per hour by playing your audio content in a lower definition. 

How many hours will 1GB of data last for?

Now you know how many MB or GB each smartphone activity will consume, we can calculate how long 1GB could last before running out. 

Activity

Time duration with 1GB*

Browsing the internet

16.6 hours

Listening to music

Spotify

92.5 hours (24kbps)

23 hours (96kbps)

13 hours (160kbps)

6.9 hours (320kbps)

Watching Netflix

1 hour (standard definition)

0.3 hours (HD) / 18 minutes

Watching YouTube videos

0.6 hours (1080p) / 36 minutes 

0.37 hours (4K) / 22 minutes

Browsing social media

11 hours (scrolling)

6.4 hours (interacting)

Using Skype / FaceTime

Skype

3.7 hours

 

FaceTime

5.5 hours

*Calculated based on data consumption values in previous table - 1000MB or 1GB / XXMB or XXGB


As you can see, a 1GB bundle is quite small, and doesn’t allow you to do a lot each month before it runs out. 

For reference, there are 720 hours in an average month, so if you watched one hour-long Netflix episode in standard definition, you’d be out of data! 1GB isn’t even enough to stream a video on YouTube that’s over half an hour long. It’s safe to say this bundle isn’t suitable for people who like to watch videos whilst out and about. 

You could at least scroll social media for a couple of hours a week before draining your allowance, as well as browse the internet for an hour every other day. You can also stream audio content in lower qualities for quite a long time.

Is 1GB of data enough for me?

Simply put, 1GB is not suitable for users who stream video or audio content a lot. 

This bundle size is best for people who:

  • Primarily use their mobile data for searching the internet
  • Listen to audio content sometimes
  • Video call friends or family once or twice a month

SIM plans to suit you

At Asda mobile, we don’t offer a 1GB bundle, but we do have a 3GB bundle with unlimited minutes and texts for just £5 per month! 

With this bundle you’ll also get 4G speeds, 99% UK population coverage, ‘roam like you’re at home’ in 36 European destinations, no contracts, and no credit checks. 

You can also top-up your data each month if you find yourself needing a little more. 

Once you’ve found your perfect bundle, why not browse our online shop for the best phone to match?

3GB for £5

 

Discover more

If 1GB isn’t right for you, check out our other data guides here:

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Never had any problems using data or phone calls. Great price for month to month contract. Purchased another Sim for my son as it’s half the price of our Virgin Media contract.

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