We have covered managing your bandwidth using a metered connection, but that is only part of the solution when using today’s modern Internet. Popular websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram can go through a limited data plan in minutes. For me, it is complete frustration at times when I use my smartphone to share my Internet then browse a website to encounter an auto-loading video. Modern browsers don’t have a Work offline option anymore; that was was a handy back in the days of dial-up. But there are some things you can do to reduce the effect of bandwidth hogging auto-play videos with your limited data plan.
It’s also worth mentioning that auto-playing videos on your timeline are just purely annoying to some people. So, even if you have bandwidth to spare, you might want to disable auto-play settings where you can.
Modify Social Network Autoplay Settings
Social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube all now push auto-loading videos whether you like it or not. Here is how you can disable it or minimize its impact on your data.
Facebook: Log into your account and go to Settings > Videos and under Video Settings turn Auto-Lay Videos off, and set the video quality to default or SD.
Twitter: Log into your account and go to Settings > Click Account > under Content, uncheck Video Autoplay > click Save Changes > enter your password then click Save Changes again.
YouTube: Log into your account and go to Settings > Playback and select I have a slow connection. Never play higher-quality video and make sure to click Save.
For other websites, it’s a tricky situation since the code for these websites gets an update on a continual basis. So, a workaround today, might not work a few months from now. But, here is what you can do to block auto-play videos in your browser for what works at the time of this writing.
In the address bar, type: about:config (click through the void warranty gag if it comes up). In the search field, type autoplay, right-click media.autoplay.enabled then click toggle. That’s it!
A little bit more effort is required, you will need to download an extension to disable autoplay videos. I recommend Disable HTML5 Autoplay that will disable both HTML5 audio and video automatically when you load a web page.
I should also note that Adobe Flash is beginning to see its last days as a critical part of your web experience, but it’s still used by millions of websites for delivering video, check out our article for instructions how to disable it.
How about you? Are you on a limited bandwidth connection and see your bits and bytes get gobbled up by auto-play videos? Leave a comment below and share any tips we may have missed.