What Are the Most Data Consuming Websites? [Examples]

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Most data consuming websites

The average American household consumes 586.7 GB every month.

To put things into perspective, that would be enough to fully download Encyclopedia Britannica 500 times over.

If you think that’s crazy, experts estimate that this uptrend in data usage will sustain in the foreseeable future.

One of the reasons behind our growing voracious appetite for data is our ever-changing internet use. In general, browsing the Web is less bandwidth-hungry than using apps.

But it would be wrong to assume that websites couldn’t drain your data plan.

Here’s the truth:

The most data consuming websites

The most data consuming websites are media streaming platforms, social media networks, video conferencing services, and browser games.

Here are 10 of the heaviest sites billions of people use every day:

  • Netflix.com
  • Primevideo.com
  • Disneyplus.com
  • Hulu.com
  • Tv.apple.com
  • Youtube.com
  • Facebook.com
  • Instagram.com
  • Twitter.com
  • Zoom.us

Let us explain why they gobble up a significant amount of data.

How much data do websites use?

Video quality and your activity would dictate how much data sites use.

Have a look at the table below:

WebsiteActivityData usage
Netflix.comUltra HD video streaming7 GB/hour
Primevideo.comHD video streaming2 GB/hour
Disneyplus.comUltra HD video streaming7.7 GB/hour
Hulu.comUltra HD video streaming7.2 GB/hour
Tv.apple.comUltra HD video streaming8 GB/hour
Youtube.comUltra HD video streaming7 GB/hour
Facebook.comMix of News Feed browsing, photo viewing, and video streaming4.1 MB/minute
Instagram.comMix of image browsing and video streaming600 MB/hour
Twitter.comMix of tweeting, retweeting, and media viewing3 GB/day
Zoom.usFull HD group call2.4 GB/hour or 40 MB/minute

Video is the common denominator for these sites.

For this reason, our collective data usage increases as video quality improves and the technologies that support them become more available.

In fact, you don’t need to actively watch videos to deplete your data allotment.

Sites with an autoplay feature trigger playback the moment you come across a clip. Videos on autoplay may not have audio turned on. So, it can be difficult to notice them.

Moreover, watching videos offline results in less data usage than streaming them. But auto-downloading media you don’t intend to consume later is an utter waste of resources.

Also, advertising is a data pit.

Research shows that ads on news publications can account for up to 79% of mobile data usage.

Without using a VPN with a robust ad blocker, you may unknowingly waste a lot of money on your internet service even if you only read papers online.

Which are the least data-consuming websites?

The least data-consuming websites belong to nonprofits. Good examples are:

  • Wikimedia.org
  • Wikipedia.org
  • Wiktionary.org
  • Wikiquote.org
  • Wikisource.org

Clearly, wiki sites dominate this list because they’re mostly text. They have simple web design too. Plus, they rely on donations, so they display zero ads.

Summary

Browser-centric online activity can conserve your data. But visiting sites to stream content, view images, hold a group video meeting, or play games can max out your internet plan quickly.

That’s why it’s no wonder that Netflix, Prime Video, and the like are usually the most data-consuming websites.

Conversely, the least draining sites are practically devoid of videos and photos and show no ads. Regardless of where you go online, you can consume your data wisely with the right VPN and web browser.