If you enjoy a Netflix subscription but have data caps on your household internet plan, you’ve probably wondered how much of your monthly data is consumed when you watch Netflix. It’s a great question, and the answer is – it depends on the settings you choose in your Netflix account, on individual household devices, or in your mobile settings.

Adjust your settings to save data

You may have noticed you can adjust video resolution, or picture quality, when you watch Netflix. That will affect how much of your data it eats up. Lowering resolution may affect video quality, but for entertainment that doesn’t require 4k excellence, lowering resolution can save data and avoid the “throttling” or internet speed slow-down that comes when you meet your monthly data threshold.

For now, Netflix allows subscribers to toggle resolution in “playback settings” under “data usage per screen.” In fact, Netflix even estimates the likely data consumption from different resolution choices. Besides the “auto” resolution setting, Netflix gives subscribers the options of “low,” “medium,” or “high” resolution playback.

How much data is consumed depends on your settings

Netflix estimates that viewers consume:

These Netflix data consumption settings estimate usage per screen. If your household has multiple account profiles streaming Netflix simultaneously, each device is consuming that amount of data.

Netflix has different options for mobile

For mobile app viewing, Netflix also offers data consumption options to save data or optimize viewing quality. In the app, under “video playback,” subscribers will find “cellular data usage,” featuring a Wi-Fi only option. Other Netflix mobile data consumption settings include “automatic,” “save data," and "maximum data."

In mobile app settings, Netflix estimates that:

Checking your television, app, and Netflix account settings can help you optimize your data plan and entertainment quality.

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