Mobilie Data Compression Tools (pt. 3)

Austin Haedicke bio photo By Austin Haedicke Comment

For previous posts in this series please see Part One(featuring Opera Max) and Part Two(featuring Onavo).

This series will conclude with the third app review. Featured here will be Data Eye.

Perhaps the things that stands out most about this app is that you get a very grandular control over your apps’ data usage. While this is true in Opera Max,and system wide if you’re on Android 6.0 Marshmallow, the process is a bit reversed. That is, the app starts off by blocking all apps from mobile data. From an OS perspective this doesn’t make any sense. What would be the point of a mobile device and ergo mobile data, if it is turned off by default?

However, from an app’s perspective this makes a lot of sense. It’s a lot easier to simply block all aps, then view “attempted connections”, and whitelist the ones I approve than it is to go into each app’s setting individually and blacklist their data usage.

Data Savings:

The savings here were pretty sad, about 0.09 MiB when a total of 97 MiB were used. That’s less than 1% savings, compared to the whopping 40% I got with Onavo.

Battery Usage:

This was on par with Onavo and Opera Max, ranging from 5 - 15% depending on how active the app was that day (e.g. How much mobile data I was using and therefore the app is filtering through it’s VPN).

Clarification / Corrections:

In Part Two of this series I was critical of the discovery that Onavo “used” more data than it saved.
However, I found that this was also the case with Data Eye. After doing some more research and comparing my device’s monitoring of data use with the respective apps’ monitoring, I found that all data being filtered through the VPN was counted as being used by the VPN.

This is a bit misleading since (for example): Instagram gets a lot of compression. Rather than the device itself reporting that Instagram is using a high amount of data, the phone will report that (insert name of reviewed compression app) is responsible for the data use. In other words, Data Eye isn’t using that much data, it’s just being accused of using all the data of the apps (who are actually requesting data) whose content it is filtering.

Series Summary:

  • Opera Max

    Opera Max appers to be the best overall. It has the second bess percentage of data savings and applies across the broadest variety of appes. If you’re phone’s battery can handle it (e.g. such as on my Nexus 6p), it’s well worth giving it a try. You’ll also get some granular control over your apps’ data use in case you’re not on Marshmallow.

  • Onavo

    Onavo offers the best data compression, but it’s use case is limited. If you’re just looking for simple and uncomplicated option to save you some data, this is you’re best bet. It’s free, ad-free, and simple to use.

  • Data Eye

    Data Eye meets the previous two in the middle. It offers the lowest percentage of data savings of those apps tested, but it does offer very handy granular control that conveniently starts with all apps being blacklisted until you approve them.

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