There are so many fun and useful apps on the iPhone that it’s easy to download a bunch of them from the App Store and start experimenting with them out in the real world.
But some apps can use a lot of mobile data, which could be problematic if your cellular plan limits your data usage, or charges overage when you exceed a certain amount.
You can disable cellular data usage for individual apps on your iPhone by going to Settings > Cellular > and tapping the button next to each app for which you want to disallow cellular data usage.
Learning how to disable cellular data for your apps on your iPhone could help you if you are worried about using all your monthly data too quickly.
Nowadays, most carriers offer plans of unlimited data which works great if you tend to stream music, youtube videos or use your iPhone for navigation in your vehicle.
Having that cellular connection available at all times makes cellular data use much simpler, and makes those apps even better.
While a good majority of consumers will use this plan, not everyone will opt to go unlimited, but instead, they will choose a plan that is limited to a specific data usage per month.
How to Disable Cellular Data for Apps on an iPhone 13
- Click on the Settings app on your iPhone.
- Click on the Cellular button
- Scroll down to see all the apps using Cellular Data
- Toggle the switch to the right of the app you would like to disable cellular data for.
- Continue to do the same for each app you would like to disable cellular data for.
Below, you will see additional information on how to stop iPhone apps from using Cellular Data as well as disabling background app refresh, including photos.
How to Stop iPhone Apps from Using Cellular Data on an iPhone 13 (Guide with Pictures)
By default, iPhones are designed to keep data turned on for all apps as it keeps the user connected at all times. Users may not realize how much data these apps are actually using even when not using the app.
These apps will continue to run in the background and may drain any data you have left on your phone plan.
Step 1: On the home screen of your iPhone, swipe on your home page until you find the Settings application and tap on it.
Step 2: Scroll down until you see the Cellular setting and select it. Click on this to bring up the page with all your downloaded apps that use data.
Step 3: If you scroll down, you can see every individual app that uses data. You can turn off data for specific apps of your choosing. Toggle the switch next to each app you would like to disable data for.
Continue to toggle the switches next to all the apps for which you would like to disable data. Note that I have turned off cellular data for the Peacock app and Spotify in the image below.
There is a “Cellular” setting at the top as seen here. This will disable Cellular for the whole iPhone. You will not be able to search the Web or use anything that requires data if you choose this option. Note that this only applies to a cellular network connection. You can still connect to the Internet on Wi-Fi.
Once these apps’ data have been disabled, you will need to be connected to wifi if you decide to use one of the apps you chose to disable cellular data on. Otherwise, these apps will no longer drain your data plan even when they run in the background.
How to Disable Background App Refresh on an iPhone
Apps running in the background of your iPhone can drastically reduce the battery life as well as stop background data usage as stated previously. Similar to disabling the date for specific apps, its a quick and easy process to disable background apps from refreshing.
- Click on the settings app on your homepage.
- Scroll down until you see the “General” setting.
- Once you click on that, scroll down until you see “Background App Refresh” setting.
- You will see a general “Background App Refresh” selection at the top which will turn off the setting for all apps on your iPhone.
- Scroll down to see every individual app that runs in the background of your iPhone. Just like the “Cellular Data” toggle switches, toggle the switch next to each app you would like to disable background app refresh for.
After selecting the individual apps or choosing to disable background app refresh altogether, you should see a difference in battery life as well as performance on your iPhone.
More information on How to Reduce Cellular Data Usage on iPhone 13
Almost every app you use nowadays requires the use of cellular data in some way. There are a couple of other ways you can limit the amount of mobile data usage you incur on a day-to-day basis.
Using wifi whenever possible is one of the best ways to not have your phone rely on your data plan. Whether you are at home or if you go to a friend’s and family’s house, connect to wifi when using your phone.
If you tend to listen to a lot of music on a streaming platform, such as Apple Music or Spotify, try downloading your music while still on wifi so you can listen to them in the car or when wifi is not available.
When you are on the cellular menu to turn off cellular data for specific apps, you can see a data amount listed under each app. This represents the amount of data used by that app since your cellular data usage statistics were last reset.
For example, you may want to turn cellular data off for some of the entertainment apps on your device, especially if you are running into issues with how much cellular data you use each month.
Streaming music brings one of the highest data contributors for phone carriers.
Navigation apps, such as Google Maps, allow you to search for a destination while on wifi and continue your drive in the car without being connected to wifi or using cellular data.
That can easily be done by choosing “Offline Mode” in the settings of the google maps app after searching for a destination.
Matthew Burleigh has been a freelance writer since the early 2000s. You can find his writing all over the Web, where his content has collectively been read millions of times.
Matthew received his Master’s degree in Computer Science, then spent over a decade as an IT consultant for small businesses before focusing on writing and website creation.
The topics he covers for MasterYourTech.com include iPhones, Microsoft Office, and Google Apps.
You can read his full bio here.