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iPhone is telco’s dream machine, it encourages mobile internet data usage by design. It is the device that propelled cellular data usage to the mainstream, making it common nowadays for many to always connected to the internet. iPhone is also a dream machine to many, and we list down 6 ways that iPhone can also be friendly to your pocket.
### 1. Sign Up A Cellular Data Plan
iPhone is designed to be an always-on internet device. In its default settings, it will connect automatically to nearby Wifi first and cellular data network second. Many of iPhone’s basic apps such as Weather, Stocks, Maps, App Store etc requires internet connection in order to work.
When you are connect using cellular data network, iPhone will display (for Edge) or (for GPRS) or “3G” icon on the status bar, right next to your telco’s brand name. If you are connected to the internet via Wifi, the icon is .
You can disable cellular internet access and use only Wifi by [changing the APN under Settings app](http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2283?viewlocale=en_US) to one of wrong info. From firmware 2.0 onwards, Apple allows telco the ability to disable this settings. So depending on your telco, you might not be able to disable cellular internet access.
We strongly recommend you to sign up a cellular data plan if you use the cellular data network. Most telco offers cellular data plans that are cheaper compare to the per-use data rate. Compare and choose the plan that match your mobile lifestyle. For example there is no need to sign up the more expensive unlimited plan if you do not use the iPhone outside often.
### 2. Check Your Cellular Data Usage
If you are not on an unlimited cellular data plan, check and monitor your cellular data usage. Your telco might provide an online utility for such purpose. If not you best bet is to watch the usage on your iPhone under *Settings->General->Usage*.
### 3. No Video While On Cellular
If you are not on an unlimited cellular data plan, do not watch YouTube or other videos while on cellular data network.
### 4. Switch Off Data Roaming
Goto *Settings->General->Network* and make sure you switch off data roaming when you travel overseas.
You do not want to be slapped with a [$62,000 bill after downloading a movie when overseas](http://arstechnica.com/telecom/news/2009/04/users-62000-data-bill-a-result-of-poor-travel-planning.ars).
You can not switch off data roaming if you are still running iPhone firmware 1.0. There is no reason not to upgrade your iPhone firmware to the latest 2.x.
### 5. SMS Texting
Apple’s SMS app sports a chat-like interface and turns texting into easy conversation. Watch out for your texting numbers if your telco does not bundled a generous amount of free SMS with your mobile plan.
For an example, if your telco charges 15cents per text, and you send out an average 5 message per day. That will be an additional of about $22.50 monthly.
Avoid texting if you travel overseas. In most cases it is cheaper to talk over the phone rather than texting due to the hefty roaming charges of SMS messages.
Use chat services instead if you like to chat:
* [Yahoo! Messenger](http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=309219097&mt=8)
* [Google Talk](http://www.google.com/mobile/apple/talk.html)
* Or [Palringo](http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=286274367&mt=8) for multi-protocol chat app supporting iChat, Windows Live Messenger, Google Talk/Jabber, ICO, Yahoo! Messenger and Gadu-Gadu.
### 6. Use Cheaper Call Option
Use [Skype](http://www.skype.com/download/skype/iphone/) or other VoIP providers to reduce your call charges. You can have free calls using Skype-to-Skype or reduce your bill by using SkypeOut service to call phones and mobile. Please note that you need Wifi connection in order to use Skype.