Today I got a bit of a nasty surprise with my mobile data and I am not sure how to correct it.

In my settings for the Play Store I have (and had for ages) download only on Wifi.

This month something has changed as my phone has gone over its data allowance and looking at the list of apps and usage the top bandwidth user is the Play Store on Mobile Data with 540Mb.

I do not understand why the Play Store is updating on Mobile data even though it is not supposed to?

Under the Wifi Usage tab the Play store is also the largest user of bandwidth, which I do expect as that is what is supposed to happen.

Any ideas why Play Store is running over Mobile Data?

  • Are you sure it was updating apps? The update setting only applies to automatic updates, not to anything Play Store downloads while you're using it (e.g. when installing new apps).
    – Dan Hulme
    Jun 9, 2014 at 14:16
  • Not sure what the Play store app was doing. It was not installing any new apps as I have not added a new app for about 2 months. The mobile data graph shows a sudden increase about a week ago (A very sharp rise) and all the other apps have a bandwidth usage of around 6mb at most.
    – Peter
    Jun 9, 2014 at 22:07
  • 1
    It could be the play store updating ITSELF as it does. There is no setting for this, only the 'auto update apps' as mentioned by Dan.
    – RossC
    Jun 10, 2014 at 11:25
  • I've had problems with it updating itself in the past; I don't think there's any way to stop it either (it complains and refuses to show anything if you turn off background data for it).
    – user43185
    Jan 12, 2015 at 20:50
  • Duplicate of android.stackexchange.com/q/65445/36187 (Though the comments here are more useful - how often does play store update itself??) Apr 27, 2015 at 20:12

2 Answers 2


Google Play Store/Services does actually download stuffs over mobile data. Its a bit annoying and under certain circumstances can be quite frustrating, in cases like if someone went camping or on a trip with limited data plans, and google play used all of it to update stuffs. Well, things you could do are, turning off mobile data when not in use, although as soon as you go online, it'll srart downloading. Second thing you could do is, turn on powersaving mode, which reduces the amount of power consumption and also restricts background data. Third thing you can do is enable restrict background apps which is separate from power saving as it only includes restricting apps from taking up data in the background over mobile data plans. And the fourth and probably my favorite is to use a firewall app. Although firewall apps are build into modern Android versions, google play being a system app has an upper hand over that function. That's when a firewall app like "NETGUARD" comes in handy. This app basically stops all incoming and outgoing traffic from your phone (except apps that you allow) with the help of a vpn that routes to localhost. This app is hands down one of my fav so far, and yeah, might as well give it a try perhaps? This app is available both on F-Droid and on Google Play Store. Hope this helps (:


I had the same issue. The solution, which worked for me has been going to Settings → Data usage → Data Saving Mode. Besides switching this mode on and off, there is an additional menu called Unlimited Data Access, in which you can activate this feature on per app basis. In my case, Play Store was activated. Switching this option to off brought me over the hump and I am fine now.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .