Understand and manage your usage

What is Internet usage?

Internet usage is the amount of data (in bytes, kilobytes, megabytes or gigabytes) transferred between your computer and the Internet in a given period of time. Data is transferred two ways: from the Internet network to your computer (download) or from your computer to the Internet (upload).

Whether surfing the Web, sending and receiving email, playing online or network games (with a game console), or downloading various content, all activities that use the Internet contribute to your usage.

Note: Remote maintenance and management of your modem via Videotron network generates a minimal bandwidth usage of roughly 1MB (1024 KB) per month. This usage is deducted from your monthly data transfer capacity.

What is the difference between download and upload? 

1. A download is a transfer of data from the Internet to your computer.

Downloads may include:

  • Navigating the Web: Every site visited sends data to your computer so that it can display the information correctly.
  • Web-TV and Web-Radio, which stream video and audio content, send a stream of data every second (hence the term “streaming”). In doing so, they use much more bandwidth than simple navigation.
  • Email: Involves opening files received by email (generally in Excel, Word or Powerpoint formats) and any type of photo, attachment or written message.
  • Chatting: Describes messages received in an online conversation. Video conference chatting uses more bandwidth than typed messages.
  • Downloading songs, movies, software or images also uses bandwidth.

2 - An upload is a transfer of data from your computer to the Internet.

Uploads may include:

  • Chatting: Every message or video conference sent is an upload. Video conferences represent a significant transfer because the user’s image is streamed.
  • Email: Any typed message or attachment (photos or Word, Excel or PowerPoint files) in an email that is sent represents an upload.
  • Download sites: Sites used for downloading songs and videos (LimeWire, Kazaa, BitTorrent, etc.) are based on file exchanges: other users access your library to download songs from it. This too is an upload.

The average Web user typically downloads more than he or she uploads.

What is a gigabyte (GB) of data ?
A gigabyte (GB) is a unit of measure of computer data that is equivalent to 1,024 x 1,024 KB or 1,048,576 KB. Approximately, 1GB of data is the equivalent of:

  • 200 x 5-MB songs
  • or 1000 x 1-MB images
  • or 1.4 x 700-MB movies
  • or 1 hour and 50 minutes of viewing

Why does Videotron track excessive usage?
Videotron tracks and sets Internet usage limits to provide reliable service to all Videotron customers. These restrictions were put in place only to discourage overuse, which clogs up the network and penalizes all users.

How can I check my Internet usage?
To check your Internet usage, you must first be authenticated at the Customer Center. Log in to the Customer Centre with your unique identifier and password and then visit our Internet Usage section.

There, you’ll get more details on your Internet usage..

What causes excessive usage?

The most common causes are the following:

  • Streaming of video or audio content on Netflix, YouTube,,, etc.
  • Exchanging files via peer to peer (P2P) software, such as those using Torrent protocol
  • Online gaming on XBOX LIVE, Play Station Network, computer game, etc.
  • Online sharing and storage on cloud servers such as Google Drive, iCloud, One Drive, DropBox, etc.
  • Using and updating smartphones, tablets and smart TVs connected to your Wi-Fi network
  • Adding connected objects, such as security cameras

How much bandwidth do I use on average when I watch videos on
On average, you'll use 550 MB of bandwidth when you watch an hour's worth of videos on*.

Bandwith use according to content viewed on*
Movie 1h30 825 MB
TV show 30 min 275 MB
Video 10 min 90 MB

*Bandwidth use while viewing content on estimates based on an average flow of 1.1 Mbps and a 10% TCP-IP overhead.

What should I do to monitor my Internet usage?

To view your Internet usage
Log in to our Customer Centre with your personal username and password. Once these have been authenticated, visit the Internet Usage section at:

To monitor your Internet usage, you can also subscribe to usage notifications. With this free service, you’ll be informed by email and/or text message when your usage reaches a certain maximum threshold (50, 75, 90 or 100%). To find out more, visit our notification subscription page.

External applications* are also available to help you monitor your Internet usage. Some of them show your usage according to your plan’s capacity.
The most secure applications require a user key. You can create, reinitialize or delete this key in your usage tracking tools section.

 * External applications are provided "as is" with Videotron, and remain the responsibility of the developer.
Videotron will in not be responsible for the operation of the application, or for any loss or damage from its use.

Has this article answered your questions?

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