Sorry for the slightly melodramatic title, but I really hope I'm not imagining this -- in short, my data is getting consumed faster, depending on what phone the SIM is in.
Here's the detailed story -
So I've been using UltraMobile's unlimited plan that gives 50GB of hotspot data as my home internet. I use the SIM in my Visible Moto E6, and have been very happy with the plan. I rarely use more than 30GB in any given month. So about 1GB per day.
And now for the am-I-imagining-this part: just for kicks, I decided to put the UltraMobile SIM into my old unlocked MetroPCS phone. And found that my data was getting gobbled up really fast. Suddenly, I was using over 2GB per day!!
My theory is that MetroPCS phones are somehow designed to use up TMobile data overly fast. With UltraMobile being a TMobile MVNO, the Metro phone started gobbling up data.
I've used that Metro phone with Freedompop AT&T in the past, and never had issues with data-gobbling, which bolsters my suspicion that Metro phones are designed to gobble up TMobile data specifically.
Anyways, thanks for listening! I have, of course, removed the SIM from the Metro phone, and it's safely back in the Visible MotoE6, where it uses less than 1GB per day as before!
Tracfone gobbled up my entire allotment of 1 gb of data on the first day I provisioned the phone in 2018. My average usage has been 1/2 gb per month from 2018 thru 2021 when on tmobile or att mvno's. Data usage ran around 1 to one and one half gbs per month on verizon mvnos.
Thanks for your responses, everyone. The Metro phone is "well-hardened" against data leaks. Background data is disabled, like it has been since my FreedomPop AT&T days. I don't use streaming so no HD content to use up more data either.
For the Unlimited plan, Ultra's Account Dashboard doesn't show how much data has been used, it just says "unlimited LTE" for data usage. I believe it will say "2G" or something similar after 50GB has been used up, but I've never gone over 50GB so I don't know. The Metro phone used to show usage pretty accurately when it was on FreedomPop, so I don't think the problem lies with the phone.
So the data-gobbling mystery is still unsolved! I wonder if carriers are able to rig up their phones to deliberately "gobble up" data.