Smartphone bill off the charts lately? Here's why - FOX 13 News

Smartphone bill off the charts lately? Here's why

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TAMPA (FOX 13) -

Has your smartphone bill been off the charts lately?

There's a reason for that, and part of the problem is likely traced back to the "Ice Bucket Challenge."

No, we're not taking aim at the popular fundraising craze that has taken over Facebook the last month – but the very fact that it has taken over Facebook could be your data problem.

And it all goes back to Facebook's decision this year to rollout auto-playing video in your news feeds.

The feature – which automatically starts videos without sounds as you scroll through the Facebook app on your phone – is eating up your data plan.

A new report from MoneySavingExpert.com indicates that consumer complaints are rolling in, and it makes sense.

Facebook news feeds have been full of videos this month – a majority of them from the Ice Bucket Challenge. As they note, the BBC reported that there were in excess of 2.4 million ice bucket challenge-related videos, and as many as 28 million have uploaded, commented on, or "liked" a similar post.

That's a lot of video. That's a lot of video in your news feeds. That's a lot of data.

Here's how you can solve the problem. It's an easy fix.

For iPhones, you can choose between three settings for auto-playing videos: "On," "Off," or "Only on Wi-Fi." Your best bet, if you don't hate the feature, is to just make sure you choose the Wi-Fi setting. That way, it will only play when you're on a network and it won't eat up your data allowance.

For Androids, you can go into the Facebook app and change the same setting under your Facebook account settings.

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