Data Use

Back to Customer Education

What is Data Usage?
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could pay one set price for all the heating oil (or wood pellets, electricity, kerosene, natural gas, etc.) we could use for a month or a season?  That way, no matter how brutal a winter, we wouldn’t have to worry about any additional costs to heat our homes.  It sounds like a perfect scenario, doesn’t it?
But, what about the person with an 800 square foot home.  Should they have to pay the same as the person with a 4,000 square foot home?  What about the person who turns the thermostat up to 80 degrees while someone else keeps their home at 64 degrees?  What if the price of fuel rises drastically mid-season?  Who should absorb that cost – the supplier? 
Overall, that plan just couldn’t work.  The same is true for data.    Data usage is the measurement of information that is sent and received by an electronic device.  In other words, the amount of information downloaded or uploaded through an Internet connection, including streaming videos and music, downloading webpages, online gaming and more.  Network resources are not unlimited, so PenTeleData manages our network and policies to deliver the best possible Internet experience to all customers.  This means setting data usage limits based on a customer’s chosen service.  Fortunately, almost all customers stay well within these limits without even trying.

Here are some usage estimates:

• Web Surfing for one hour = 18 MB
• Average Email size (without attachments) = .02 MB
• Online Gaming for one hour = 20 MB
• Social Networking for one hour = 51 MB
• Streaming Video for an hour (SD) = .75 GB
• Streaming Video for an hour (HD) = 2 GB
• Video Chatting for an hour = .34 GB

Please note: 1 GB (gigabyte) = 1024 MB (megabytes)

To exceed a 250 GB limit, you would have to do any of the following:

• Send 50 million e-mails (at 0.05 kb/email)
• Download 50,000 songs (at 5 MB/song)
• Download 63 high definition movies (at 2 GB/hour streaming) ex. Based upon 2 hour movie
• Upload 25,000 high resolution digital photos (at 10 MB/photo)
*These numbers are estimates. Actual usage may vary.

Do you have additional questions about data usage?  We offer an online calculator resource, designed to show the varying totals based on activity at   You can also visit our Data FAQ page at