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Understanding data usage figures from agents

Started by: darrenpainter
On: 14/12/2012 | 20:05
Replies: 9
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by: darrenpainter
on: 14/12/2012 | 20:05

I have recently seen a few queries where people have included an extract of their data usage which has been supplied by agents

 

One such example might look like this

 

Date Called Number Type Volume Amount 14/12/2012 00:42  ip-address 1 3.1204214E7 bytes 2.15 14/12/2012 00:43 ip-address 1 1.0486923E7 bytes 2 14/12/2012 08:59ip-address 1 2.0972927E7 bytes 4 14/12/2012 08:58 ip-address 1 3.1460936E7 bytes 6 14/12/2012 09:00ip-address 1 2.4646602E7 bytes 4.70

 

which is hard to decipher and understand for most people

 

The first thing you need to do is try and format it a bit better to allow you to read and understand the figures

 

e.g

 

Date   Called Type Volume   Amount
14/12/2012 00:42 ip-address 1 3.1204214E7 bytes 2.15
14/12/2012 00:43 ip-address 1 1.0486923E7 bytes 2
14/12/2012 08:59 ip-address 1 2.0972927E7 bytes 4
14/12/2012 08:58 ip-address 1 3.1460936E7 bytes 6
14/12/2012 09:00 ip-address 1 2.4646602E7 bytes 4.7

 

So you can now see when and how much data was used, and the last column shows the cost in £

 

So given that information it looks like small amounts of data such as 3.12 bytes, 1.04 bytes etc, so why is the cost so high?.

 

Well those data usage volumes such as 3.1204214E7 are written in scientiic notation rather than a normal decimal number

 

So to convert such a number what you need to do is move the decimal place a number of places to the right as shown by the figure after the letter E

 

So 3.1204214E7 would become 31204214 bytes or 31.2 MB

 

So now it becomes very easy to see why you might be seeing such large costs.

 

Of course remember that the first data session each day is charged at 20p for the 1st 20MB, and then all subsequant megabytes are charged at 20p each

 

___________________________________

 

Really the moral of this tip is that giffgaff could do with getting agents to correctly pre-format the usage extracts they send out when trying to justify unexplained data costs. It would cause much less confusion for members

Message 1 of 10
by: bluemoonbaz
on: 14/12/2012 | 20:07
Yes i agree darren would great if they were put out like yours
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Message 2 of 10
by: pad3
on: 14/12/2012 | 20:10
thanks for this.
your right giffgaff should make info easy to understand
Message 3 of 10
by: 1_
on: 14/12/2012 | 20:32
Nice, I didn't know what scientic notation was. Thanks.
Message 4 of 10
by: nednats
on: 16/12/2012 | 16:33 edited: 16/12/2012 | 16:47

@darrenpainter wrote:
 

So 3.1204214E7 would become 31204214 bytes or 31.2 MB

 


 

Sorry Darren but your calculations are a bit worng.

31204214 bytes = 29.76 MB

 

1 Kilobyte = 1024 bytes

 

1 Megabyte = 1024 Kilobytes

1 Megabyte = 1,048,576 bytes

 

 

Message 5 of 10
by: apinkduck
on: 16/12/2012 | 16:37
Would be much easier to understand if 3.1204214E7 was written as 31,204,214 bytes.
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Message 6 of 10
by: nednats
on: 16/12/2012 | 16:54

@apinkduck wrote:
Would be much easier to understand if 3.1204214E7 was written as 31,204,214 bytes.

As I explained above it maybe diffcult for the average user to calculate how many bytes into Megabyte.

It should be written in Megabytes. In this suitation the figure given should be  29.76 MB

Message 7 of 10
by: darrenpainter
on: 16/12/2012 | 17:32
Thanks Nednats, I wasn't really going for exact accuracy, just trying to set people straight on how to read the poorly constructed data excerpts, because some people had been reading the figures as 3.12 bytes rather than either of the figures we have put forward

But I appreciate your more detailed maths to get an accurate figure

At the end of the day I think we can all agree that the data needs some serious reformatting to make it anywhere near useful to someone querying their billing
Message 8 of 10
by: nednats
on: 16/12/2012 | 17:45

@darrenpainter wrote:
Thanks Nednats, I wasn't really going for exact accuracy, just trying to set people straight on how to read the poorly constructed data excerpts, because some people had been reading the figures as 3.12 bytes rather than either of the figures we have put forward

But I appreciate your more detailed maths to get an accurate figure

At the end of the day I think we can all agree that the data needs some serious reformatting to make it anywhere near useful to someone querying their billing

There is difference of 1.44MB between the 2 figures. This could send someone over a threshold so accuary is needed.

But ulimately the figures should be given in megabytes

Message 9 of 10
Highlighted
by: bob_williams
on: 17/12/2012 | 13:58
With the pricing in MB surely the figures should be in MB too even if they say 0.009MB if a very small bit is used.
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Message 10 of 10