We love our smartphones. They provide a portal to the world at large. We get to connect with people gazillion kilometres away via the internet. Computers provide the same access but for most Zimbabweans the smartphone is the sole computer they have.
It all sounds like magic, imagine trying to explain how it all works to a 15th century reincarnate. We barely understand how it works ourselves. What we know for certain though is that it costs money. To gain access to the internet you need data which does not come cheap.
The modern smartphones we have do not help the situation either. These things are thirsty. They are the reason some feel their network operators swindle them of their data.
You know what I’m talking about here. Data disappearing in the background. You recharge your phone with the intention of doing some research or responding to some emails, you attend to other matters for an hour or so. When you get back to do your surfing, ain’t no data to be found.
You’re like, how is this possible when you know you didn’t use the phone since you recharged. It hardly ever is the network operator, it’s all the background processes running on your phone.
Google has heard our collective cries. Welcome the hero we deserve here in the developing world: Datally. Developed by Google themselves.
Okay, as it is with investment where you have to spend money to make money, you need data to get Datally. Then you can save data. Fortunately getting Datally requires less than 5mb.
Datally is an app available for Android users which allows them to control their data usage. It allows users to block certain individual apps from accessing either mobile data or WiFi or both. You can also block background processes altogether.
This means being able to deny your flashlight access to the internet. What is it doing on the internet anyway? You could set it up that only WhatsApp, Facebook and Gmail can connect to the internet. You would nolonger need to utilise Airplane mode. You could recharge your phone, leave it be and come back to the data you left, minus the little those three apps use.
You also get detailed and easy to understand information on exactly what is chowing your data on an hourly, daily weekly or monthly basis. It gets better: you also get personalised recommendations on how you can save more.
There’s more, the app also helps you find and connect to public WiFi networks. There are not too many free public WiFi hotspots in Zimbabwe but it is something.
There are other data usage apps out there but on most of them you have to contend with ads, which is kind of contradictory. It eats up your data whilst trying to help you save data. This offering from Google is completely free.
Get it on the Play Store here.
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