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Gloucestershire Business News

Lockdown Brits sitting on £165 million in unused data

Brits in lockdown have 165 million gigabytes of unused mobile data, worth £165 million, according to new research.

With millions of us confined to our homes during the nationwide lockdown, consumers are using a fraction of the data that they would usually, as they rely on their household wifi to stay connected.

Among those who aren't essential workers, average data use has dropped from 2.4GB a month in February to 1.9GB a month now - a fall of 500MB, or 21 per cent, according to research by Uswitch.

On the other hand, essential workers' data usage has increased by 100MB over the same period, up to 2.8GB a month in lockdown, compared to 2.7GB in February.

But it hasn't been the same story for everyone, even those working at home.

Simon Gardner, sales manager at Lister Unified Communications  based in Stonehouse, said: "We have seen a different story in the business sector. We have found with some businesses there have been increases in mobile data usage over the last few weeks. At first we wondered why, with so many people in lockdown at home, they weren't using their home wifi?

"But whilst alerting business customers to their high mobile data usage their feedback was, 'My home broadband is very poor' or they now have three kids and a partner all using the home broadband, so they have been using mobile data instead. We have been helping some customers increase their mobile data tariffs for the last few weeks, especially unlimited data plans."

More than a third of consumers (38 per cent) want their unused data to be rolled over to the following month, while one in five (22 per cent) would like a refund on any unused data. A generous one in ten (11 per cent) would like to give their unused data to essential workers, and eight per cent want a monetary equivalent to be donated to charity.

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