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How to reduce Instagram data usage

Ting tip

Quick tips to get the most from your phone, your favorite apps and your Ting service. No fluff. Just the tips.

Reduce Instagram data usage

In a line-up of apps accused of wasting your mobile data, I bet you’d probably never consider your old friend Instagram. I mean, how could it be guilty? It’s just pictures, right? Hundreds of pictures of brunch, with some filters on it. Pictures, and sometimes video. Streaming video that plays without your permission…

You hear the shatter without realizing the mug was slipping out of your hand. Coffee spills everywhere.

How could you have been so foolish? Instagram was Kaiser Soze all along. What once appeared as an innocent looking app with a bum leg, now confidently strides out of your workplace and into a limousine, taking your precious megabytes along for the ride.

Luckily, this week’s Ting Tip exposes the one secret Instagram never bothered telling you – it has a mode to control cellular data usage. Just flip on the “Use Less Data” switch and videos will no longer automatically preload over your mobile network, saving you money in the process if you’re with a pay-for-what-you-use provider like Ting.

Read on for our step-by-step instructions on how to reduce Instagram data usage.

 

 

Reduce Instagram data usage

Save battery power on your AMOLED display with Pixel Filter for Android

save battery power

Get Pixel Filter to save battery power

As screens get bigger and with battery life always at a premium, even AMOLED screens can use a little help.

AMOLED (active-matrix organic light emitting diode) screens are inside a wide variety of phones, from the original Moto X to the latest Samsung Galaxy 8, 8+ and Note8. AMOLED differs from LCD in that each pixel is its own light source. With traditional LCD screens, the pixels need to be lit from behind. Counterintuitively, in LCD, pixels are backlit even when they’re trying to show black.

If you’re wondering whether your phone has an AMOLED display or not, check out this handy Wikipedia list (just click Show to expand the list).

AMOLED screens are capable of showing off a greater range of colors and displaying vibrant images. One cool thing about AMOLED is that when a pixel is black, it’s off and so doesn’t draw power.

Maybe you’re already dimming your screen when your battery starts to run low but that’s only part of the battle. Pixel Filter is a smart little app that lets you take things a step further. Download it for free in the Google Play Store.

Why fiber Internet? For our growing digital needs, of course.

Why fiber Internet

It might surprise you to know that today, the main backbone of the Internet in America is fiber. The undersea cables that connect the continents are fiber. Without fiber, the Internet becomes more like the Internot.

So why isn’t fiber to the home (FTTH) more widespread? The fiber gap exists because many ISPs rely on dated copper wiring to connect back to the network. Copper wiring was a purpose-built infrastructure for telephones and later, for cable TV. It wasn’t built with the Internet in mind. It has limited bandwidth, it’s slow relative to fiber and it suffers signal degradation over distances.

Visions of the future: What we were promised versus what we got

visions of the futureFor those of us who grew up on Star Trek and the adventures of Marty McFly, the future looked bright indeed. From space colonies and superintelligent computers to time machines and teleportation, sci-fi stories promised us an exciting, glimmering world of tech gadgets that enabled excitement and made living easy.

Unfortunately, the technology we wound up with hasn’t exactly lived up to expectations. Below, we’ll go over a few visions of the future that didn’t quite materialize in the ways we might have hoped.

A fiber connection can increase home value

home value

Increase home value with a fiber Internet connection

Did you know fiber Internet can boost home value?

A 2015 study commissioned by the Fiber to the Home Council Americas (FTTH) found that the impact of fiber on property values can be more than three percent. On a $300,000 home, that’s a $9,000 boost.

A fiber connection has an impact on home prices similar to other home improvement projects. Many homeowners opt to renovate and upgrade their homes and properties. These improvements, like redoing the kitchen, putting in hardwood floors or investing in landscaping, can be attractive features to prospective home buyers.

The increase calculated by the FTTH study was $5,437, based on the value of an average US home. To put that boost in perspective, it’s equal to adding a fireplace, half of a bathroom or a quarter of a swimming pool. Not literally, of course; no one wants a quarter of a swimming pool.

Today, people are shopping for more than just curb appeal. They’re looking for a quality Internet connection.

How to find 4K content online

4K content online

What makes 4K content so special?

4K content is the next level of HD with about four times the resolution of regular 1080p HD content. This makes 4K (also called Ultra High Definition or UHD) content look crisp and clean on ultra-high-res screens. If you want the most vibrant image possible, 4K is what you should be looking for.

When 4K TVs originally hit the market, they were exorbitantly expensive. However, 4K TVs are becoming much more attractively priced. You can find a 50” 4K TV on Amazon.com selling for as little as $500 (see examples). Once you’ve purchased your 4K TV, the question becomes, “where can I find 4K content online?”