Some of us consume internet sparingly, while others stream high definition content or download huge torrents every other night. Most internet service providers put monthly data caps on their internet plans, so your subscription automatically gets locked when the data limit is reached. If you want to keep an eye on your internet data usage on a Windows 8 or RT computer, Network Usage is here to help. It’s a Modern UI app that lets you monitor the amount of data sent and received by your network device. It’s fairly simple to use, and the intuitive, touch-friendly UI makes it suitable for tablets as well.
When you launch the app, it displays your monthly data usage in easy-to-understand bar graphs. In addition, it displays information on your current network connection, including its IP address, connectivity level, roaming status, interface/speed, authentication state, and encryption method (WEP, WPA, WPA2 etc.). The app can scan the amount of data transferred in the last three months (as it seemed during our testing). You can see data usage by month, date or even a particular hour, while the drill-down capability lets you go deeper down the nest by clicking or tapping on the graphs. Each bar on the graph is itself split into sent and received data.
Clicking or tapping a month’s graph entry reveals data use details for all the days in that month. This helps you further break down the available information and can be very useful in spotting days on which your data usage went high.
Furthermore, tapping any day’s graph entry shows you your data transfers by the hour fashion. This can be particularly useful in checking if Internet was consumed during times when you weren’t actively using your computer. The application also supports multiple network interfaces, and you can switch between all the available network connections from the dropdown menu at the top-left.
The Settings bar offers options for changing the Auto-Refresh time of the app. You can entirely disable auto-refresh, or set a value for it up to 300 minutes. You can also change the color for the sent and received bars shown on the graph.
Network Usage is available on Windows Store for free, and works on Windows 8 and RT. Testing was carried out on Windows 8 Pro, 64-bit.