When you travel overseas, your phone will no longer be in range of its carrier’s network. If you choose to use data abroad, you will most likely connect to another carrier’s service who will then charge your own carrier for “renting” their network. These data roaming bills add up quickly for everything you use on your phone that involves data. Below we will identify the culprits that use data, provide step-by-step details on how to disable them for Android v4.3, and show you tips on how to avoid data roaming fees for a much more pleasant and stress-free trip.
1. Turn Off Data Roaming
When you begin using another carrier’s network overseas, your Android phone will notify you that you are roaming with an “R” appearing next to the signal bars. To disable data roaming on your Android:
1. Go to “Settings”
2. Go to “Wireless and Networks”
3. Mobile Networks -> Data Off
You now have the option to disable data roaming over mobile networks.
2. Turn On Airplane Mode
In airplane mode, your Android phone will be unable to make or receive calls, texts, or connect to local cellular towers for Internet access. It disables all cellular, wireless, Bluetooth and GPS connections so you don’t receive unexpected data roaming fees. To enable or disable Airplane Mode:
1. Navigate to “Settings”
2. Select “Wireless and Networks”
3. Switch Airplane Mode On/Off.
3. Disable Push Notifications
Each time your applications sync or update they notify you of the changes made via push notifications in the form of a sound, badge or text. Every push notification requires a connection to the Internet.
To disable push notifications:
1. Go to “Settings”
2. Click on “Device”
3. Tap “Application Manager”
4. Uncheck the box that says Show Notifications
4. Disable Auto-Syncing
To improve or modify an existing app, you must download an update for each application. Most apps connect to the Internet automatically and download these updates themselves. When traveling overseas, this can lead to unwanted data roaming charges. Follow these steps to disable automatic updates.
1. Click “Google Play Store”
2. Navigate to “Menu”
3. Click on “Settings”
4. Click on “Auto Update Apps”
5. You can choose to either completely stop automatic updates or only download updates through Wi-Fi.
5. Track Your Data Usage
If you are going overseas and intend to use your data plan, make sure to monitor your data usage. Once you begin going over your data plan’s limit, you will be charged an increased amount for your data usage.
1. Click “Settings”
2. Tap “Data Usage”
3. Select the date range for your trip
For a more detailed report on your data usage, you can download My Data Manager or Onavo Count. Both apps create alerts when you are about to go over your data limit and also widgets that display your current data usage.
6. Bring a Mobile Hotspot
Now that you have customized your data usage and can manage how much data you are using, you final step is a reliable source of Wi-Fi for all of your business needs while traveling abroad. With XCom Global, you can rent a mobile hotspot for a flat rate of $14.95 per day with coverage in over 175+ countries. XCom Global’s mobile hotspot devices offer extended battery life, feature download speeds of up to 21.6 Mbps, and offer advanced WPA2 security protection to keep your connection reliable and secure.
7. Make Voice Calls and More
With your mobile hotspot, you can utilize your Wi-Fi access to make calls, send text messages and connect to your company back home without relying on a mobile phone plan. Skype and Viber are two such applications that allow you to share image, video, and audio messages over the Internet with fellow Skype and Viber users. There are currently over 800 million combined users of both applications. Accomplish your tasks through Wi-Fi and forget about paying for international calls.
Even if your Android is not the newest model, each phone has a similar way to configure data roaming and syncing with your apps. Follow these simple steps and take control over your data roaming. Bring a mobile hotspot for your overseas travel to utilize secure, reliable Internet access for a productive and enjoyable experience.