Does Bluetooth Use Data?

How Does Bluetooth Work? Will It Eat Your Data Plan?

There are a lot of people wondering whether Bluetooth needs cellular data or not. First, it’s important to understand exactly what Bluetooth is. Just like a wireless internet connection, Bluetooth is also a wireless technology that uses a 2.4 GHz bandwidth. However, these two things are different.

Bluetooth enables devices to transmit radio waves. There are keyboards, mice, speakers, hands-free headsets, printers, gaming controllers, fitness bracelets, TV remote controllers and plenty of other devices, aside from smartphones and tablets, that use Bluetooth.

Does Bluetooth Use Data?

The good news is that Bluetooth will not impact your data plan, since it uses a different kind of signal.

Bluetooth does not need an internet connection to transmit the signal from one device to another. Bluetooth uses short-range radio waves to connect two compatible devices. This is why Bluetooth is a perfect option when you travel and cannot access internet networks.

For instance, by enabling Bluetooth on your smartphone, you can listen to music or watch TV series. You can connect the smartphone with Bluetooth headphones or a Bluetooth speaker.

What you should know about Bluetooth is that the devices connected to each other need to be in a certain range (10 meters for most devices and smartphones) to be able to remain connected.

While a Bluetooth connection will not use data, the apps that stream online media will need an internet connection. However, as long as you use media already downloaded on your device and use Bluetooth headphones, you shouldn’t need an internet connection. But if you’re using Netflix or Spotify, these apps will need an internet connection to work.

Considering Bluetooth is a connection through which you send data from one device to another using those short-range radio waves, it doesn’t need an internet connection to do so.

So, ultimately Bluetooth does not use data, but as we mentioned earlier, you must make sure you don’t use apps that need an internet connection. The apps you install and use will be the ones that drain your data, not your Bluetooth connection. In order to play it safe and to avoid astronomical bills for your usage, make sure you keep a close eye on your use and try to limit data usage through apps if you’re worried about going over. Most importantly, stay connected to a Wi-Fi internet connection when you can, so that you don’t have to worry about data overages at all.


About James Sterling

James Sterling received both his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Southern California (USC). His Bachelor of Science was completed in Computer Science (Games) and his Master of Science was completed in Game Development. James spends his free time contributing on popular forums such as Tom's Hardware and AnandTech while hanging out with his cat Jonathan. Humorously, his favorite youtube channel is Jimquisition by Jim Sterling.

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