How do I reduce Ring data usage?

With Ring video doorbells and security cameras becoming increasingly popular, many homeowners are wondering how they can reduce the data usage from these devices. High data usage from Ring devices can lead to surpassing internet data caps and incurring overage charges from internet service providers (ISPs). Thankfully, there are several ways to optimize and reduce Ring data usage without compromising on video quality or features.

Understand how Ring devices use data

The first step is to understand how Ring devices consume data in the first place. There are three primary factors that impact Ring data usage:

  • Video quality settings – Higher quality video uses more data. Ring allows adjusting quality from Low to High.
  • Motion detection settings – More frequent motion events trigger more video uploads. Adjusting motion zones and sensitivity can help.
  • Frequency of live streaming – Live streaming to check in on cameras consumes data. Minimizing live view helps.

In addition to these factors, the number of devices and household internet activity also plays a role. With this knowledge, we can move on to specific ways to optimize data.

Adjust video quality settings

Ring allows customizing the video quality settings in the app or desktop dashboard. Lower quality settings will use less data while still providing usable footage. Here are the different quality options and their data usage impact:

Video Quality Data Usage
Low Least data usage
Medium (default) Moderate data usage
High Highest data usage

For most homeowners, the Medium setting provides a good balance of video quality while still saving data. Low can also work well and uses even less data. Unless you have unlimited data, the High setting likely uses more data than needed.

Optimize motion detection settings

Motion detection triggers your Ring devices to start recording and uploading video. Adjusting the motion detection settings can have a major impact on your data usage:

  • Motion Zones – Restrict motion detection to only the key areas that need monitoring. This prevents unnecessary recordings.
  • Motion Sensitivity – Lower the sensitivity so motion is only detected when truly needed. This also reduces unneeded recordings.
  • Motion Frequency – Lengthen the time between motion events to avoid too frequent recordings. For example, set to only detect every 30 minutes.

Taking time to tweak these settings for each camera’s field of view can significantly cut down on motion detections and data usage.

Minimize live streaming

Live streaming from Ring devices to check them in real time can consume large amounts of data, especially on mobile networks. Limit live streaming to only occasional checks. For regular monitoring, use motion detection alerts instead to notify you of activity.

Some ways to minimize live streaming data usage:

  • Only check live view when absolutely needed and keep sessions brief.
  • Set cameras to not stream on mobile data – only use live view when on WiFi.
  • Disable Live View in public sharing links to eliminate streaming by others.
  • Consider wired Ring devices to stream locally without using internet data.

Set video length appropriately

Ring allows setting how long recorded motion events are. Shorter video lengths use less data. Balance having enough footage while optimizing for data.

  • 10-30 seconds is ideal for most uses.
  • Only use longer 1-2 minute recordings if truly necessary.

Also, if using a Ring Pro plan for recording storage:

  • Opt for the 60-day storage option over the 30-day to reduce re-uploading of videos.

Limit number of devices

The more Ring cameras and doorbells installed, the more data will be used. Eliminate any non-essential devices to save on data usage. Consider if all installed devices are truly needed based on home size, entry points, etc.

Also, prioritize devices in key locations and remove redundant devices in overlapping spots that create excessive recordings of the same areas.

Use wired devices when possible

For locations near existing wiring, wired Ring devices use less data than battery-powered models. Wired devices stream and upload video locally over your home network instead of relying on internet data. This allows higher quality video with minimal data usage. Choose wired versions of:

  • Ring Doorbell
  • Ring Floodlight Cam
  • Ring Spotlight Cam

Locations without existing wiring nearby do still benefit from the wireless capabilities of battery-powered Ring devices. But when the option exists, wired models are ideal to cut down on data.

Enable optimal WiFi performance

While WiFi doesn’t directly affect the data being used, having an unstable or congested WiFi network can contribute to increased data usage from Ring devices re-uploading interrupted video uploads. To optimize your WiFi:

  • Locate the WiFi router centrally in your home to ensure strong coverage.
  • Reduce interference by placing router away from appliances and electronics.
  • Consider WiFi range extenders if coverage is weak in device locations.
  • Upgrade to mesh WiFi systems to maximize coverage everywhere.
  • Update to latest router model for best performance with multiple devices.

Use a microSD card for local storage

Certain battery-powered Ring cameras, like Ring Stick Up Cams, support local video storage using a microSD card. This allows recording motion events without having to upload them to the cloud which consumes internet data usage. microSD cards provide a very affordable way to reduce data usage. However, this will limit ability to access video remotely when away.

Limit shared user access

Shared users you grant access to your Ring devices will contribute to increased data usage through their own live streaming and video downloads. Limit shared user access to only essential accounts like family members to avoid uncontrolled data usage by others.


With a few adjustments to settings, habits, and device placement, most homeowners can effectively minimize data usage from Ring products. The most impactful changes are optimizing motion detection, limiting live streaming, and using lower video quality settings. Wired devices also play a key role in reducing data usage whenever possible. Practicing these tips will allow enjoying all the benefits of Ring security devices without exceeding internet data limits or caps.