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How Much Data Do Radio Apps Use In 2023? + Tips To Save Data

Do Radio Apps Use Data

Some people use radio apps on their way to work.

Others regularly listen in their home.

And if you’re one of both…

Your data plan bill might come as a shock to you.

Using radio apps with your cellular data has hit your monthly data limit. 

Let’s change that before the next thing that’s maxed up is your card. 


Continue reading to find out:

  • Which radio app uses the least amount of data. 
  • 5 effective tips to lower the data consumption of your radio app. 
  • How you can lower your radio’s audio quality to reduce the data it uses.
  • And much, much more… 

Do radio apps use data?

Radio apps use data. Your mobile device streams the radio stations on your app using the Internet. So if you’re not connected to WiFi or cellular data, you won’t be able to play any stations on your radio apps.

How much data do radio apps use?

The data that radio apps use depends on the app itself. 

But most of the time, radio apps consume around 45 Mb of data per hour. 

Of course, this isn’t a worrying number if you’re using unlimited WiFi to stream radio stations.

But if you’re using your mobile data…

This level of Mb consumption can cause you to max out your monthly data allowance.

And if you’re unlucky, you might even be charged for exceeding your cellular data limit. 

Which, trust me, can be very expensive. 

So to give you a better sense of how much data radio apps use… 

Here’s the average hourly data consumption chart of the most popular mobile radio apps:

Mobile radio appHourly data consumption
Simple Radio 60 Mb
TuneIn Radio23 Mb
iTunes Radio30 Mb
Rdio app96 Mb

As you can see, each app consumes a different amount of cellular data. 

But the good news is, no matter which type of radio app you’re using…

There are easy workarounds you can try to reduce its data consumption. 

So don’t worry. I got you. 

Here are… 

5 tips to save data when using radio apps

#1: Use WiFi whenever possible

Use WiFi Whenever Possible

You might think this is too obvious, but really… 

The easiest way to save data while using your radio app is to not use your mobile plan at all. 

So whenever you have the chance to use a WiFi network…

Grab it.

And I’m not just talking about the WiFi in your school, workplace, or home.

You should also connect to WiFi networks in public places like:

  • Malls.
  • Libraries. 
  • Coffee shops.

Now, doing this will let you save tons of data from your cellular plan.

However, there’s something you must know. 

Important: Not all public WiFi networks are secured. 

Some networks may gain unwanted access to your information without your permission. 

So while this tip can no doubt lower your data consumption…

You have to be aware of its risks. 

But don’t worry. Here are… 

3 tips to protect your privacy while using public WiFi networks:

Tip 1: Don’t access personal or financial websites or apps on public networks. 

It’s always better to assume that all public WiFis aren’t secure. 

So if you just want to use your radio app, stick to it.

And avoid accessing sensitive information while connected to public networks. 

Tip 2: Use a VPN.

VPN or Virtual Private Network is a tool you can use to protect your information.

It locks your data so that websites and public WiFi networks can’t access your information. 

Even if they try to. 

Tip 3: Pay attention to warnings. 

Your browser will usually alert you if the website you’re about to enter can’t be trusted. 

And unfortunately…

The danger to using these sites is doubled when you’re connected to public WiFis. 

So if you see 1, leave the website immediately. 

Check out: Can You Listen To Shortwave Radio Online?

#2: Lower your audio quality

If you’re a fan of Youtube…

You’re most likely familiar with changing the video quality of the clip you’re watching. 

And for most videos, you can choose 1 of these quality levels:

  • 360P.
  • 720P.
  • 1080P.

Now, just like you can select different levels of video quality… 

You can also change the quality of your audio while streaming on your radio app. 

“How’s that related to my data?”

To explain it simply, the lower your audio quality, the less data it consumes. 

So if you want to save data…

You should lower the quality of your app’s default playback.


The exact process depends on the app you have.

But to give you an example of how it generally goes… 

Here’s how you can lower the audio quality of your TuneIn Radio app:

  1. Open the app.
  2. Head to the Now Playing screen.
  3. Click the square Menu button (3 dots). 
  4. Tap Select Stream.
  5. Select a lower audio quality. 

For most apps, these are the quality choices you’ll find: 

  • 24 kbps (low).
  • 160 kbps (high).
  • 96 kbps (normal).

Pro tip: If you want to save the most data, select 24 kbps. 

#3: Limit the amount of time you’re using the app

If you’ve tried the previous tips, but your radio app still consumes a lot of data…

It might be because you’re spending too much time using it. 

So another tip I can give you is… 

To reduce the time you’re actually spending on your radio app. 

I know this can be a bit hard to do. 

But try allocating a time limit each day…

And adhere to it. 

This way, you can limit the cellular data that your radio consumes.

Much like you can save more money if you budget your expenses. 

Check out: 8 Things To Do if Alexa Won’t Play Your Radio Station

#4: Turn off the data usage of other apps

“What do you mean?”

See, when you turn ON your cellular data to listen to your favorite radio stations… 

Your radio app isn’t the only 1 consuming that data. 


Because other apps running in the background will also connect to the Internet. 

I’m talking about apps like:

And unless you turn OFF their data usage temporarily…

They’ll continue using your data even when all you really want to use is your radio app. 

But don’t worry. 

I’ll teach you how you can easily stop them from wasting your precious Mbs. 

For Android devices:

  1. Head to your device’s Settings.
  2. Tap Network & Internet > Data Usage. 
  3. You’ll see the list of apps using your data. 
  4. Besides each app, you’ll see a toggle option. 
  5. Turn OFF the 1st 10 apps on the list. 

Note: Exact steps will vary depending on the model of your device. 

For iOS users: 

  1. Go to the Settings app.
  2. Click Cellular.
  3. Scroll down until the CELLULAR DATA menu.
  4. Under this, you’ll see the list of apps using your data. 
  5. Turn OFF the 1st 10 apps from this list (excluding your radio app). 

And if you’re wondering why you only need to turn OFF the 1st 10 apps… 

It’s because those below them don’t necessarily consume too much data. 

So even if they’re still ON, they’ll make little difference in your data consumption. 

Now, once you’ve turned OFF the data usage of other applications…

Your radio app will be the only 1 using a significant amount of data when it’s ON. 

Thus, this allows you to save the remaining Mbs you have on your cellular plan. 

#5: Use the TuneIn radio app instead

If you’re serious about using less data while listening to your favorite radio stations

Then I highly recommend using the TuneIn radio app instead.


Because out of all the most popular radio apps you can use now…

This 1 consumes the least amount of data. 

To be precise, it only uses about 23 Mb of data per hour, while the average radio app consumes 45 Mb for the same duration. 

Of course, this tip only applies to those who don’t have the app yet.

So if you’re currently using a different app, worrying about how much data it uses…

Consider using the TuneIn app instead. 

Fret not. I’ll tell you exactly…

How you can download the TuneIn Radio app 

On iOS devices: 
  1. Turn ON your Apple device and head to the App Store.
  2. At the bottom-right, click Search.
  3. On the search bar, type “TuneIn Radio.”
  4. Tap the app. 
  5. Click the blue GET option. 
  6. Input your password or passcode if needed.
  7. Wait for the process to finish. 

Or, if you want, you can also access the app here directly. 

On Android devices: 
  1. Turn your Android device ON. 
  2. Go to the Play Store app. 
  3. In its search bar, type in “TuneIn Radio.”
  4. When you see the app, tap the Install beside it. 
  5. Follow the on-screen instructions.
  6. Wait for the download process to be completed. 

Note: There can be slight variations to these steps depending on your Android device. 

But alternatively, you can simply click here to access the app.

Once you have TuneIn Radio on your device, create a new account, and enjoy streaming. 

Reminder: Your audio streaming quality will be automatically set to the standard (128kbps). Lower this number to further reduce the app’s data consumption. For more information on how to do this, refer to the 2nd tip. 

Interested in knowing more about what TuneIn Radio can offer? Watch this video:

Do FM radio apps use data?

FM radio apps use data. 

And unless you have a phone with a built-in FM receiver…

You’ll need the Internet to access the FM radio apps that you want to use. 

“Is there a way to listen to radio stations offline?”

Unfortunately, there isn’t.

As radio stations are broadcasted live most of the time…

The only way to listen to them without an active antenna is through the Internet. 

But if you’re wondering whether or not you can still use your radio app offline, you can.


By downloading playlists and recorded podcasts from the app beforehand.

Of course, these are different from listening to live radio stations.

But honestly, they’re life savers when you just want something to listen to…

While you’re stuck in a place without an Internet connection. 


Here are some radio apps that let you download podcasts for offline playback: