How to Turn Off Cellular Data on an iPhone or iPad

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If you’re using an iPhone or iPad (Wi-Fi + Cellular) on the go, you probably rely on cellular data to access the Internet when you’re away from home or the office. It’s easy to quickly turn cell data on or off to troubleshoot or save money on your cell bill. Here’s how.

What is cellular data?

Cellular data is a term that means connecting to the Internet using a cell phone network. This means you can access the Internet on the go, away from Wi-Fi. All iPhone models support cellular data and some iPad models labeled “Cellular Wi-Fi“Also support him.

Why deactivate cellular data?

The availability of cellular data is almost always a good thing, but sometimes you may want to temporarily turn it off.

One of the reasons for turning off cellular data is that many cell phone plans charge extra for accessing cellular data, and many measure the amount of data you use. To save money on your bill, you can turn off cellular data so that you don’t incur additional charges. (You can also configure applications that can use cellular data and keep track of how much data you are using.)

If the Wi-Fi signal you use frequently is weak in one location, your phone may automatically switch to cellular data for Internet access, and you may not notice it, which will result in a phone bill. much higher than expected.

For the same reason, some people need to turn off cellular data to troubleshoot Wi-Fi connections. When cellular data is turned off, you can accurately measure Wi-Fi speed and connectivity, knowing with certainty that the device is getting all its data from Wi-Fi and not from a cellular network.

Activate or deactivate cellular data using Control Center

The quickest way to turn cellular data on or off is to using Control Center.

Control Center is a collection of shortcuts to commonly used tasks, such as adjusting screen brightness, volume, playing songs, etc. It also allows you to quickly launch features, such as turning on the flashlight or taking a photo.

First, launch Control Center. Here’s how.

iPhone X or later / iPad running iOS 12 or later: Swipe down from the top right corner of the screen.
iPhone 8 or earlier / iPad running iOS 11 or earlier: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen. (Control Center first appeared on iOS 7.)

How to launch Control Center on iPhone and iPad

Once you have done this, Control Center will appear. Find the circular icon that looks like an antenna with radio waves around it. It’s the cellular data icon.

If the cellular data icon is green, it means that cellular data is activated.
If the cellular data icon is gray, it means that cellular data is turned off.

Tap the icon to turn cellular data on or off, depending on how you like it.

Disable cellular data using Control Center

When cellular data is turned off, your iPhone or iPad must use Wi-Fi to connect to the Internet.

You can also switch to airplane mode (the circular icon with the airplane inside) to deactivate the cellular data of the Control Center. Note that Airplane mode also turns off Wi-Fi at the same time, although you can turn Wi-Fi back on after turning on Airplane mode.

RELATED: How to use Control Center on your iPhone or iPad

Turn cellular data on or off using the Settings app

Another way to turn cellular data on or off is to use the Apple Settings app, which is usually found on your Home screen. Launch it by tapping the gray gear icon.

Open settings on iPhone

Once in the settings, find the “Cellular” option and press it.

Cellular option on iOS

In the Cellular menu, locate the “Cellular data” switch at the top. Press the switch to turn it on or off. When cellular data is turned on, the switch slides to the right and appears in green.

You can also control roaming data from here. Tap “Cellular Data Options” to find these settings. For example, you can turn off cellular data roaming when travel abroad to protect you from additional charges, depending on your cell phone plan.

Cellular data switch

If you’ve turned off cellular data, be sure to turn it back on (by repeating the steps above) when you move away from Wi-Fi. Otherwise, some applications connected to the Internet, such as Messages and Mail, may not work as expected.

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