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Snapchat’s Discover feature is killing your data plan

A new data vampire is here, and its name is Discover.


Mike Wehner


Posted on Feb 10, 2015   Updated on May 29, 2021, 2:03 pm CDT

It’s only been a couple of weeks since Snapchat debuted its new Discover feature in an attempt to be taken a bit more seriously. This new grown-up Snapchat section delivers content from creative types as well as popular brands, and it acts like a mini digital magazine for a variety of topics. 

Unfortunately, evidence is mounting that it’s a bit too robust for its own good, and you might be paying for it with a data overage.

Snapchat users first began to sound the alarm bell less than a day ago via Reddit, and it started with a single user inquiring why Snapchat was gobbling up so much data. Once the initial “you’ve been sending too many nudes” jabs had subsided and a few more Snapchat fans chimed in with screenshots of their own data woes, it became clear that something is indeed amiss.

One Reddit user in particular notes that while his girlfriend updated the application when Discover became available, he allowed his phone to remain on the “old” version of the app. Over the past two weeks or so, he has amassed just 330 MB of data usage from the app, while his significant other has racked up a whopping 20.3 GB.

The universal consensus seems to be that as soon as Discover was added, background data consumption skyrocketed. This isn’t entirely surprising given the high-quality, high-resolution videos and images included in all the ready-to-watch brands on the Discover page. CNN’s curated snaps consist of several lengthy clips and many different “pages” on its own, and that’s just one of the dozen Discover options available. Add the fact that these pages are updated regularly so as to be timely and relevant, and you have a recipe for mass data consumption.

We’ve reached out to Snapchat and will update this story when we receive comment, but in the meantime it’s probably a good idea to kill your background data option for Snapchat and prevent the app from consuming any more of your pricey bits and bytes. 

Photo via Pestoverde/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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*First Published: Feb 10, 2015, 12:49 pm CST