Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, the time has come for you to stop worrying about receiving an astronomical monthly bill from your network provider telling you that you owe them an extortionate amount of money due to the fact that you have massively exceeded your cellular data download limits. In my experience, cellular data is a varying beast. One month I can hardly use it, and the other, I can go way over my allocated service plan limit, meaning that it is very difficult to gauge an average of how much I am likely to use.
The Data Usage Monitor tweak from Elias Limneos is a Greek developer’s solution to this problem, and aims to provide an advanced data tracking service that doesn’t interfere with the general day-to-day operation of the device. I know, you might be thinking that other apps already do this, and you’re right, in fact, iOS even has a data tracking option that can be resetted every month. However, as is always the case, the devil is in the details and that is where the Data Usage Monitor tweak excels above all others. It seems that Limneos has pretty much covered all bases with this tweak, and made it as native as possible without the need to launch separate apps or hunt through different settings bundles to find the used data total.
First of all, this tweak comes with a substantial set of configurable options that can be tweaked through the Settings app on the device. The options include; what type of data usage the user requires the tweak to monitor. This may seem like a common sense decision considering the tweak is designed to track cellular data usage, but it also includes the option to track device data used when tethering the data connection to other wireless devices through the use of iOS’s Personal Hotspot feature. The user can also specify the units in which the tweak should display the used data, such as megabytes, kilobytes or gigabytes as well as the precision of the displayed data through the use of decimal places.
One of the more advanced features of Data Usage Monitor is the fact that it can actually be set to disable access to cellular data based upon user defined cellular data limits. This little option basically ensures that users won’t ever go over their network allocated data. Obviously the tweak doesn’t entirely disable data, in fact, it only turns the radio off in a similar fashion to how SBSettings does, but it would then actually take a conscious effort by the user to re-enable it and keep using data even though they are now aware they are about to exceed their allocated data limit.
Data Usage Monitor is an excellent tracking tweak that fits seamlessly into iOS and works in a non-intrusive manner by displaying the uploaded and downloaded data in the status bar at regular intervals. The tweak is available from the BigBoss repository at a cost of $1.99 and is compatible with iOS 4.2 and above.
Of course, you will need to jailbreak your device to install this tweak. For jailbreaking the latest iOS 5.1 (tethered), follow the instructions posted here to jailbreak using Redsn0w, or here for Sn0wbreeze. For jailbreaking iPhone 4S and iPad 2, you can simply follow our step by step tutorial posted here to jailbreak iOS 5.0.1 using Absinthe on Windows or Mac. Those of you with an iPhone 4, 3GS, iPad 1, and iPod touches can use Redsn0w or Sn0wbreeze to untether jailbreak on iOS 5.0.1.