Cellular data usage on an iPhone was easy to track, until now. You simply checked Cellular Data Usage in Settings. No more! Before iOS 9, if you were connected to a WiFi network, weak or strong, you did NOT use cellular data. If wifi was too weak, you could simply turn it off and access data strictly through the cell network. Simple right?
Now, except for geeks who have time to monitor and study their iPhones continuously, there is no way to know how much cellular data one uses. As a result, my cellular provider has confirmed that they are flooded with calls from iPhone owners whose cellular data usage has skyrocketed.
First, there was no grand announcement of this so called “improvement” to iOS with the release of iOS 9. When active, wifi assist kicks in by using CELLULAR data when the wifi signal is weak. Now, we have no way of knowing (without studying the iPhone as it operates), whether we are using wifi or cellular data.
Second, the largely hidden (bottom of cellular settings after all the APPs), WiFi Assist is ON by default once iOS 9 is installed.
Third, worst of all, the cellular data used by wifi assist is NOT tracked in Cellular Data Usage counter in Settings!
Suddenly, After installing iOS 9.02 on my iPhone 6, I used 350 MB of data in just a few hours, while connected to my home wifi network! The Cellular Data Usage counter in Settings still said I had only used 180 MBin the previous MONTH (the last time I had reset the usage counter). I confirmed the actual usage with my cellular network provider.
So, Apple engineers have added a largely useless feature (since one could have previously turned off wifi in the face of a weak signal to use cellular data exclusively), not announced or explained it, and FORGOT to link WIFI ASSIST to the cellular data usage counter on our iPhones. So we cannot trust our phones to track data usage against what the cell network providers track.
I’d say this is a far greater blunder than the original Apple Maps, Antenna Gate, or any previous so-called scandals. It should be a firing offense for those involved in adding this added “functionality”. There will be many unhappy Apple iPhone users getting an unwelcome surprise in their monthly cellular bills.