Common Activities on the Internet that Take Up the Most Bandwidth


If you’re not on an unlimited broadband plan, going over your internet usage for the month can be a real pain.

There’s nothing worse than getting your broadband speed capped. There are studies that have been done to prove that slow internet causes people stress!

Furthermore, if you are with a provider that charges you for going over your allocated broadband plan, then your monthly bill is going to be a serious problem.

Check out the most common activities that are eating up your broadband plan.  

What activities use the most bandwidth


Netflix is one of the biggest bandwidth hogs for many households.

How many of us have binge watched an entire TV show in one weekend?

We are all guilty of it and if you live with others that share the same account, you can bet they’re doing the same.     


One billion hours of YouTube videos are watched every single day.

If one person attempted to watch one billion hours of YouTube videos it would take them 100,000 years.

If you factor in high-quality video resolutions such as 1080P and 2K, then that is a large chunk of your bandwidth going towards YouTube.  


We all love to play our favourite songs and albums when we cook or just chill around the house. If you are streaming a song in the best quality, you are consuming roughly 2.40MB per minute. There are options to reduce the sound quality but over time it can add up to some big numbers.  


Some of us may not think twice about this but syncing your Dropbox or any files to the cloud can take up a large amount of your bandwidth.

It happens automatically so it’s not something that comes to mind. You can adjust the settings to restrict the amount of bandwidth that is being used up every month.   

Video Calling

Video calling applications such as Skype or Facetime take up a lot of bandwidth every month. A 30 minute Skype call can use up to 650MB!

If you or someone you live with use video calling frequently, this could be one of the top reasons you use all of your bandwidth every month.  


Social media apps such as Facebook can use a lot of data depending on what you do.

If you are scrolling through your feed and watching videos, this can be one of the many reasons why you are going over your monthly plan.  

Torrenting Files

Torrenting your favourite TV shows can be one of the largest bandwidth hogs for your home.

One high-quality episode can take up to 1GB off your monthly data usage. 

Game or Application Updates

Automatic or compulsory updates for your phones, tablets or video game consoles can take up a large amount of data every month.

Especially if you have plenty of devices between everyone at your home. The average person owns at least 3 devices so that can take up plenty of bandwidth.  

Web Browsing

The average person spends roughly 48 hours browsing the web, which can equate to around 7GB per month for every person.

Multiply that by the number of people that live with you and that really adds up at the end of the month. 

Unsecured Wi-Fi

Unsecured Wi-Fi can be also be a big culprit. Nowadays, most modems have a secure set password but it’s still worth checking or updating your password if it is something generic such as Password123.

You don’t want other people accessing your Wi-Fi and using up your bandwidth.

There you have it! These are some of the most common activities that can take up the most bandwidth every month.

Every household is different so some of these activities may be more relevant and others not so much.

If you have broadband speed or prices on your mind, check out our broadband comparison tool to see which broadband providers are best for your needs.

If you’re using a lot of bandwidth, then you need to make sure that you’ve got the right internet plan.

Perhaps you’re looking for a no contract broadband plan for your home, or just the best deal. Compare our best broadband prices here.