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Average Internet Data Usage (Latest 2022 Data)

Last updated: 2 months ago
6 min read

On average a household uses 490.7 GB of data per month.

Here are the latest statistics on the average internet data usage per month. Find out how much data is consumed by:

  • A US household
  • Per person
  • An EU household

Plus, the number of streaming subscriptions per household.

Average Internet Data Usage

Jump to:

Average internet data usage per month

What’s the average data usage for a family of 4?

Average internet data usage per year

Average internet speed in the US

North American vs. European data usage

How much data does the average person use?

What are the most common activities on the internet?

Internet usage is measuring the data you use every time you check your instant messages, notifications or updates on your social networks. Availability of flat-rate unlimited broadband subscriptions and fast download speeds is contributing to a positive trend.

Globally and in the US data usage is growing dramatically. In America alone the statistics show it has grown for 228% in the last 3.5 years. In gigabytes it has grown from slightly over 200 GB to almost 500 GB today.

In this article we cover the current internet data usage facts and trends. Check the charts to see how fast the internet industry is growing, so you can adjust to the market.

Quick Facts on Average Internet Usage

  • The average US household uses 490.7 GB of data per month.
  • A family of 4 consumes 627.2 GB per month or 7.526 TB per year.
  • An average US household, uses close to 6 TB of data annually.
  • Most American households have an internet speed between 200 and 400 Mbits/s.
  • European households use 212.1 GB per month which is less than half of American subscribers.
  • An average US internet user used 154.6 GB of fixed and mobile data per month in 2021.
  • Instant messaging, email, and using social networks are the most common activity online.
  • Almost 16% of US homes use over 1 TB of internet data every month.

Average Internet Data Usage per Month

The average US household consumes 490.7 GB of data per month on their home internet network, according to the latest OpenVault Q2 2022 report.

Average internet data usage per month

This is up 13.1% from Q2 2021 but down 4.7% from Q1 2022 due to a seasonal pattern.

People use more internet in Q1 and Q4 of each year, while Q2 and Q3 see a dip in how much data is consumed. In other words, people use more internet from October to March because they spend more time indoors. And use less data from April to September because there’s more opportunity to spend time outside.

  • 85% of US households have access to a broadband internet access.
  • The average household upstream data usage is 31.2 GB per month, with a speed of 23 Mbps. That means each US household uploads over 30 GB of data per month.

What does the uploaded data entail?

The uploaded data is used for video calls and uploading social media content like images and videos.

Here’s a table with the average internet usage per month:

YearAverage internet usageGrowth
year on year
Q2 2022490.7 GB+13.2%
Q1 2022513.8 GB+11.3%
Q4 2021536.3 GB+11.1%
Q3 2021434.9 GB+13.3%
Q2 2021433.5 GB+14%
Q1 2021461.7 GB+14.7%
Q4 2020482.6 GB+40.3%
Q3 2020383.8 GB+39.5%
Q2 2020380.2 GB+35.8%
Q1 2020402.5 GB+47.2%
Q4 2019344 GB+27.3%
Q3 2019275.1 GB+20.6%
Q2 2019280 GB+29.4%
Q1 2019273.5 GB+27%
Q4 2018270.2 GB/
Q3 2018228 GB/
Q2 2018216.4 GB/
Q1 2018215.4 GB/
Source: OpenVault, per household

What’s the average data usage for a family of 4?

The average data usage for a family of 4 is 627.2 GB per month which equals 7.526 TB per year.

The calculation uses 156.8 GB as the average monthly data usage per person. Assumes adult internet users as kids and elderly use less data. The internet usage per person section shows the methodology and data sources.

Households participating in the FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program consume more data

  • On average, households in the ACP (Affordable Connectivity Program) consume 163 GB more monthly data.
  • ACP households have a median monthly internet usage of around 0.5 TB, almost 60% more than general users.
  • There are 52% more ACP households that use over 2 TB of data and 36% more that use over 1 TB per month compared to an average US household.

Average Internet Data Usage per Year

An average US household is on track to consume almost 6 TB of data (5.888 TB) in 2022, according to the latest OpenVault report.

  • While the average internet data usage for the last 12 months was 5.927 TB. The data varies through quarters due to seasonality (last data available Q2 2022).
  • An average US household consumed almost 5.6 TB of data in 2021. That’s an increase of 13.2% from 2020 when the average annual data usage was under 5 TB.

An average US household has 3.13 members according to US Census Bureau and is smaller than an average family as it includes people living alone as well.

Here’s a table of average yearly internet data consumption per household:

YearAvg. yearly data usageAvg. monthly data usageGrowth
20215599.2 GB (5.6 TB)466.6 GB+13.2%
20204947.3 GB (4.95 TB)412.3 GB+40.6%
20193517.8 GB (3.5 TB)293.1 GB+26%
20182790 GB (2.8 TB)232.5 GB/

Average Internet Speed in the US

Most US households have an internet speed between 200 and 400 Mbits per second.

Internet speed in US households
  • Almost 70% of US households have a broadband speed over 200 Mbps.
  • Close to half of households have an internet speed between 100 and 200 Mbps (megabits per second).

Here’s a breakdown of internet speeds in US homes:

Internet speed% of households
1 Gbps+13.4%
500-900 Mbps7%
200-400 Mbps49%
100-200 Mbps11.9%
50-100 Mbps11.6%
<50 Mbps7.1%
Source: OpenVault

North American vs. European Data Usage

North American households use 490.7 GB per month of internet data, while Europeans use 212.1 GB per month.

Americans use more than double the data of Europeans
  • Americans consume more than double the average data of Europeans (2.31x).
  • Median data usage of 313.9 GB in North America is almost 3x of the median data usage of 109.1 GB in Europe.

The median is the middle value that separates the top 50% and bottom 50% of households.

More US data usage statistics:

  • 98% of US households have a broadband internet connection.
  • 88% of US teenagers aged 13 to 17 have computer access.

European data usage varies from country to country.

  • The UK average internet usage isn’t far below at 453 GB per month (May 2021).

European internet data usage:

  • 92% of EU households have internet access, and 90% have broadband subscriptions.
  • A Eurostat survey found that 89% of Europeans, aged between 16 and 74, have accessed the internet in the last 3 months.
  • 8% of Europeans never used the internet.
  • 73% of Europeans use the internet while on the move via smartphones, laptops, and tablets.

How Much Data Does the Average Person Use?

An average internet user in America consumed 154.6 GB of fixed and mobile data per month in 2021.

Average internet user in America, 2021 data:

  • The average fixed broadband data usage per person is 149 GB per month (home network, Wi-Fi).
  • The average mobile user data usage is 5.6 GB per month.
  • Most internet data users globally are 25-34 years old.

Here’s a table of average fixed and mobile internet data usage per person:

YearFixed data usageMobile data usageCombinedYearly
2021149 GB5.6 GB (+24%)154.6 GB1.855 TB
2020131.7 GB4.52 GB (+27%)136.2 GB1.634 TB
201993.6 GB3.56 GB97.2 GB1.166 TB
Source: OpenVault

The average internet data usage per person is steadily growing and is soon expected to reach over 2 TB per year.

Methodology

Many websites wrongly cite household data as usage per person. The OpenVault data is per household since 1 broadband subscription represents all family members, though there is no per-person data.

The mobile usage data comes from OfCom 2022 report, which includes 2021 data (sources below).

For broadband, we calculated how much internet data an average person uses from OpenVault’s data. We assumed the average number of 3.13 members in a US household from the US Census Bureau.

What are The Most Common Activities on The Internet?

Most people use the internet for instant messaging, email, and use of social networks.

Here are the most common internet activities of US users over 15 years old:

Internet activity% of users
Instant messaging93.3%
Using e-mail91.8%
Using social networks74.6%
Online banking and investing74.3%
Online shopping, travel reservations74.1%
Watching videos70.1%
Online video calls65.6%
Streaming music, podcasts60%
Using internet services of other people43%
Working from home27.7%
Taking online classes25.7%
Controlling home equipment via internet22.3%
Searching for a job21.3%
Publishing original content17%
Selling goods online10.5%
Offering online services8.8%
Source: US Census Bureau, NTIA
  • Also, according to Entertainment Software Association, 83% of players play games with others online.

More players play games on the internet. From 77% before the Covid pandemic, the percentage has risen to over 80% today. The change in social life has made people look for human interaction online.

Related: To play video games you need a good gaming headset.

How Many Streaming Subscription Services Do Americans Have?

An average US household has 8.8 streaming services.

This includes video streaming and music streaming services.

An average US household has almost 9 streaming services
  • 85% of US households have at least 1 streaming device.
  • An average US home has 25 internet-connected devices.

How much bandwidth are video and music streaming services using on average?

Here’s a table of recommended internet speed and bandwidth usage per streaming service:

YouTubeMbits per secondGB per hours
4k Ultra HD20 Mbps9 GB/hour
1080p HD5 Mbps2.25 GB/hour
Netflix
4k Ultra HD15 Mbps6.75 GB/hours
1080p HD5Mbps
2.25 GB/hour
720p3Mbps1.35 GB/hour
Disney+
4K Ultra HD17.1 Mbps7.7 GB/hour
1080p HD4.4 Mbps2 GB/hour
Save data1.5 Mbps0.7 GB/hour
Amazon Prime Video
1080p HD3.5 Mbps1.575 GB/hour
Hulu
4K Ultra HD16 Mbps7.2 GB/hour
1080p HD3 Mbps1.35 GB/hour
HBO Max
4K Ultra HD25 Mbps+11.25 GB/hour
1080p HD5 Mbps2.25 GB/hour

How much data is consumed largely depends on the quality of the video or music. Better quality consumes more data.

  • Almost 16% of US households use over 1 TB of internet data every month, according to OpenVault. This number increased by 26.8% from a year ago.
Data usage% of households
Over 2 TB per month2.21%
Over 1 TB per month13.66%

Read more:

Conclusion: Average Internet Usage 2022

These were the latest stats on the average data usage per month. The trend is showing a rapid increase in data consumption in recent years. More and more people are using online services which require faster bandwidth and larger download capacity.

How much internet data will Americans use in the future? Let us know your opinion in the comments below.

  1. OpenVault, Broadband Insights 2019-2022. Accessed November 10, 2022.
  2. US Census Bureau, America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2021. Accessed November 10, 2022.
  3. OfCom, Communications Market Report 2022. Published 18 July, 2022. Accessed November 11, 2022.
  4. Eurostat, Digital Economy and Society Statistics. Published June, 2022. Accessed November 11, 2022.
  5. US Census Bureau, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Published October 2022. Accessed November 14, 2022.
  6. Entertainment Software Association (ESA), 2021 Essential Facts About The Video Game Industry. Published July 2021. Accessed November 12, 2022.
  7. US Census Bureau, Computer Internet Use. Accessed November 15, 2022.

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