If you need to adhere to strict data usage levels each month, to avoid being charged extra. This guide will show you how to reduce the amount of data Facebook Messenger uses on your mobile device, potentially saving you money and allowing you to use your precious data for more compelling endeavors.


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Although Facebook Messenger doesn’t use all that much data in comparison to watching and streaming videos on Youtube or Facebook, it does use more than you might realize. Depending on the country you live in, mobile data plans and prices might not be all that attractive, so using what you are allocated efficiently is important. Luckily there are some very easy ways you can customize Facebook Messenger to use a lot less data than it currently does by default.

Reduce Facebook Messenger Mobile Data Usage.

Although the steps in this guide will show you how to reduce your Facebook Messenger data usage, using some simple tricks and settings. You will also need to factor common sense into your daily Messenger usage, reducing how much content you share. Even if you aren’t one to share much content, Facebook Messenger automatically downloads content sent to you, which uses just as much data, this will be the main focus of our guide.

Fortunately, you can reduce incoming data usage by enabling Facebook Messengers data-saving option. This option restricts Facebook Messenger automatically downloading media. Instead, you will need to manually choose whether to download the content or not. To enable this option, open Facebook Messenger and tap your user icon in the top right corner. This will open the Settings menu, here scroll down until you find Data Saver, tap it once to enter the menu. Inside this menu there is only one toggle, Enable or Disable. Tap it once to flip the toggle into the on position. Making this simple change will allow you to manually decide when and what content you download.

lower facebook messenger data usage

If you’d still like pictures to download automatically and only limit videos automatically playing, you will need to follow a different set of instructions. First, open the Facebook Messenger app on your device and tap the profile icon in the top right-hand corner of your screen. From the list find the Photos, videos and emoji heading. Inside this menu, you can flip the toggle from on to off, which will disable automatic playback of Video in Facebook Messenger.

Note: At the moment this option isn’t available in all regions and is gradually being rolled out globally. iOS users currently have more access to this option than Android, however, it should soon be standard on all versions of Facebook Messenger.

Once you have made this change whenever you receive videos/movies they will no longer automatically play. Instead, when you receive them, they will display as thumbnails awaiting you to manually start playback. Which ever option you have chosen to use to save data on your device don’t forget that at the end of the day showing restraint is what will keep you under your data limits.

On the odd chance that you are using Facebook Messenger as your default SMS application you can also get some data savings be stopping MMS messages downloading automatically. To do this go back to the same location you found the Data Saving option, instead of tapping data saving, tap SMS, inside this menu make sure Auto-Retrieve MMS and Roaming Auto-retrieve are disabled.

reduce mobile data usage on android devices
If you also use WhatsApp for Messaging, below is a guide that will show you how to reduce WhatsApp data usage.

How to Reduce Data Usage in WhatsApp.