How To Monitor Network Traffic on Your Android Device
Network monitoring tracks how much traffic you consume on your Android device using both built-in apps and third-party software. This process can be important if you have limited network data on your phone as it prevents you from wasting any precious megabytes.
Why Should You Monitor Your Network?
Our smartphones and tablets are connected to the internet most of the time. The apps on our phones need internet connection to work. Even the apps that don’t need a constant internet connection sometimes have to update, which will also use internet data.
Sometimes you don’t have to worry about the internet data. For example, if you are at home on unlimited bandwidth, this is a non-issue. But imagine you are on a business trip abroad, and suddenly one of your apps starts downloading a big update. That would cause a huge problem for your limited mobile data and your phone bill as well.
Luckily, Android has a lot of apps that help you track all your network consumption.
What Can You Monitor?
All users can track their outgoing and incoming network activity with different apps from the Play Store. This software can give you information about the services, connections, and apps that use your internet traffic.
They can track which IP address you connect to. You can see how much data you send and how much gets sent back to your device with every connection. Some of these apps can also help you track and prevent some suspicious or malicious network activities.
You can limit your device’s data usage in certain hours and set various limits. Also, you can see who is connected to your Wi-Fi hotspot or see which apps eat the most of your network data. All this enables you to monitor and manage your network consumption more efficiently.
How Can You Monitor Your Network?
The best way to monitor your network is to use third-party data monitor apps. In this section, we’ll look at some of the best such apps for your Android device.
Fing is one of the best network monitors for Android. With this app, you can see all the important information that concerns your network. This includes the list of users connected to your Wi-Fi, as well as the information about unauthorized consumption of your data and any malicious behavior on the network.
With Fing, you can also test your internet speed and compare to see if your provider is really giving you the speed you’re paying for. You can also check your network’s IP address, troubleshoot network problems, and set up security notifications.
PingTools has a lot of network monitoring features that you’ll like. You can ping the network, check all your ports, Wi-Fi networks, and their configuration, see your IP address, etc. This app can also tune your network and make it a bit faster.
The app allows tracerouting, and gives you access to several extra features including Whois, a TCP port scanner, and GeoPing which shows you the availability of resources worldwide.
3. WiFi Analyzer
Whenever you want to connect to a nearby Wi-Fi, you will want to consult this app. Instead of just listing all the available Wi-Fi networks around, you will see all the relevant data about each of those networks.
This app providesinformation on how crowded each network is and how strong the signal is. All this data is illustrated with colorful and eye-catching graphs that are easy to understand.
NetCut is an app that gives you full control of your network and cuts off any unwelcome guests. If you don’t want a weak connection because your roommate is downloading a huge file or your neighbor is streaming a movie from your network, this app is for you.
When you open this app, you just give it Root access and scan the network. It will list all the users that are currently using the network and you can block anyone not supposed to be there. This app can protect your network from intruders and users with malicious intent.
5. 3G Watchdog
3G Watchdog is a complete data usage monitoring app. It will monitor your mobile and Wi-Fi data and show the results as a table, graph, or text.
You can set a limit to your usage (daily, hourly, monthly) and the application will notify you once you get close to the limit. You can always see the usage in the status bar. There is also the possibility to import and export usage history in a CSV file.
With this app, you can see how much data each individual app consumes. Based on this, you can manage your apps by priority and disable some functions if you have limited bandwidth.
Have Your Say
What is your favorite data monitoring app for Android? Share your pick(s) in the comments below.