How much data does our mobile stream use?

Some of our listeners know that we offer a special “mobile stream” for users of mobile devices (primarily; the stream is also a great way to save bandwidth regardless of what type of device you’re using, without sacrificing audio quality).

The mobile stream uses an audio encoding method called aacPlus (frequently abbreviated AAC+), rather than MP3 like our regular stream. The mobile stream runs at 48 kbps—slowly enough that you could use a dial-up connection to listen—while the main MP3 stream runs at 128 kbps. But the audio quality is essentially identical.

But the question remains: How much data does listening to on-the-go actually use?

This is an important question these days, considering that Sprint is the only major carrier in the USA (our primary market) that still offers unlimited mobile data plans. (AT&T and Verizon, the other two major carriers, cap data use on all current plans.)

The answer is our 48 kbps aacPlus stream consumes about 349,000 kb of data per minute* of listening. (This is much better than our 128 kbps stream; it consumes about 930,000 kb of data per minute*.)

On a data plan capping you at 2 Gig of data per month, you could therefore listen for roughly 95 hours a month*. Of course, this does assume you didn’t use data for anything else—which is not likely. But the bottom line is that depending on how heavily you use your mobile data service, taking us with you on-the-go can fit into a balanced diet of mobile data use.  ;-)

Just be certain that when listening with a mobile device, you’re using the 48 kbps stream. Full details are on the listening page of our web site.

TIP: Some Internet radio apps for mobile devices have bandwidth measuring tools built-in, for example, TuneIn Radio for iOS devices. These tools can be helpful in making sure you’re not over-consuming your mobile data for the month.

* The figures shown are approximate. If you’re not on an unlimited data plan, we encourage you to monitor your data usage using whatever tools or apps your mobile carrier might provide you.

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