Netflix Just Made It Easier to Save Cellphone Data When Streaming Its Movies

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Being able to Netflix and chill just got a bit easier thanks to a new tool unveiled by the company this week.

According to the streaming TV and movie provider, a new default setting will enable customers to stream about three hours of content per gigabyte of data, or about 600 Kilobits per second. Netflix claims this will boost video quality, but the real takeaway is that the change could help cellphone users avoid a high monthly phone bill due to too much data use.

“Our testing found that, on cellular networks, this setting balances good video quality with lower data usage to help avoid exceeding data caps and incurring overage fees,” Netflix said in a blog post. “If you have a mobile data plan with a higher data cap, you can adjust this setting to stream at higher bitrates.”

To set your cellular data usage, select App Settings from the Netflix iOS or Android app’s menu, pick Cellular Data Usage and switch off the automatic default. From there, you can select a higher or lower data usage setting that works with your mobile data plan; there’s even an unlimited option.

Saving on Your Cellphone Bill

Exceeding data caps is a sure way to rack up fees and hamper your budget. To get your usage in line, consider negotiating with your service provider to downgrade your plan or going elsewhere.

You may also be able to escape certain fees or pay lower rates for your cellphone service if you have a good credit score. (You can see where yours currently stands by viewing your two free credit scores, updated each month, on Credit.com.) If your credit is in rough shape, you may be able to improve your score by disputing errors on your credit report, paying down high credit card balances and limiting credit inquiries in the short-term.

You can find some more cellphone hacks that can save you money here.

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