Gateway data usage

I’ve had people asking me many times how much internet data a gateway uses. I was never able to answer it with good references, as the most of my setups have custom monitoring or using data too. Up until now.

A month ago we took a Laird RG186, configured it for TTN (Semtech UDP protocol / legacy) and connected it to the internet via a Huawei B315 LTE router. We loaded 100MB of data on the sim card and let it run until the data runs out. Our provider draws graphs of the left over data per day. The result is as follows:




So we started with 100MB on 2018-06-08 and the data ran out on 2018-07-07. That is 29 days.

100MB / 29 = 3.45MB per day

The gateway is located in a business park with may tech companies. The gateway receives a LoRaWAN packet at least every 10 seconds. The gateway also sends a status update every 30 seconds.


great info. tnx!

Q : who is the provider ? is it a special data only simcard ?

Little off topic, but I think it is a Vodacom sim card managed by

lol… I forgot you’re not located in NL … tnx anyway.

was today in the vodaphoneshop for info… difficult to buy a prepaid data (internet) only card in NL that you can remote manage/fill and that is valid for let’s say 1 year… oh… and that don’t cost you a few hundred euro’s.
they all want to sell you ‘a bundle’

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Thanks very much for the info! I’ve been running a 3G based one and this is rather handy to know how much to top up when the data runs out.

So far mines used about 150MB according to the 3G Dongles internal counter over a 2-3 month period. Much less usage.

For those looking for a network in the UK I’ve been using a vodafone dongle because it came with 2GB of data with it for £15 and further topups last 3 months instead of the usual one most carriers do over here.

little off topic too… but one more question I’m not able to find the answer myself :.

’ is it possible to switch the wifi off on the Huawei B315 LTE and cable connect a RPI direct, and still have internet … be it 3g or 4g ? ’

tnx :sunglasses:

Yes. I’m doing that at some of my high sites where radio noise is an issue.

tnx that’s perfect (I think :wink: )

Multitech IP67 outdoor gateway
Using Poly Packet Forwarder, DeviceHQ disabled.

Description Session Start Session End Usage
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-05-26 2019-05-26 00:00:00 2019-05-26 23:59:59 3.86MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-05-27 2019-05-27 00:00:00 2019-05-27 23:59:59 7.41MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-05-28 2019-05-28 00:00:00 2019-05-28 23:59:59 7.53MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-05-29 2019-05-29 00:00:00 2019-05-29 23:59:59 5.98MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-05-30 2019-05-30 00:00:00 2019-05-30 23:59:59 7.22MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-05-31 2019-05-31 00:00:00 2019-05-31 23:59:59 8.69MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-01 2019-06-01 00:00:00 2019-06-01 23:59:59 9.45MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-02 2019-06-02 00:00:00 2019-06-02 23:59:59 6.46MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-03 2019-06-03 00:00:00 2019-06-03 23:59:59 7.58MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-04 2019-06-04 00:00:00 2019-06-04 23:59:59 7.00MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-05 2019-06-05 00:00:00 2019-06-05 23:59:59 7.07MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-06 2019-06-06 00:00:00 2019-06-06 23:59:59 6.93MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-07 2019-06-07 00:00:00 2019-06-07 23:59:59 6.68MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-08 2019-06-08 00:00:00 2019-06-08 23:59:59 6.65MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-09 2019-06-09 00:00:00 2019-06-09 23:59:59 6.47MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-10 2019-06-10 00:00:00 2019-06-10 23:59:59 5.16MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-11 2019-06-11 00:00:00 2019-06-11 23:59:59 8.90MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-12 2019-06-12 00:00:00 2019-06-12 23:59:59 8.00MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-13 2019-06-13 00:00:00 2019-06-13 23:59:59 5.34MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-14 2019-06-14 00:00:00 2019-06-14 23:59:59 5.43MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-15 2019-06-15 00:00:00 2019-06-15 23:59:59 5.86MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-16 2019-06-16 00:00:00 2019-06-16 23:59:59 5.67MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-17 2019-06-17 00:00:00 2019-06-17 23:59:59 5.86MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-18 2019-06-18 00:00:00 2019-06-18 23:59:59 5.07MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-19 2019-06-19 00:00:00 2019-06-19 23:59:59 5.40MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-20 2019-06-20 00:00:00 2019-06-20 23:59:59 5.56MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-21 2019-06-21 00:00:00 2019-06-21 23:59:59 7.01MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-22 2019-06-22 00:00:00 2019-06-22 23:59:59 8.59MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-23 2019-06-23 00:00:00 2019-06-23 23:59:59 6.52MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-24 2019-06-24 00:00:00 2019-06-24 23:59:59 7.98MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-25 2019-06-25 00:00:00 2019-06-25 23:59:59 8.42MB
Afrihost APN Usage 2019-06-26 so far 2019-06-26 00:00:00 2019-06-26 23:06:31 8.51MB

Things Outdoor Gateway

RAK 7249

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Here is some data from a gateway near Apeldoorn. The gateway is in a “quiet” rural area and used on average 5,2 MB data per day while connected to 2 networks (TTN and a private server).
The gateway, built with and using the multi-packet forwarder, is connected trough a 4G broadband modem to the internet.


The implementation has [RESIN_SUPERVISOR_LOG_CONTROL] disabled to prevent logs from being sent to balena

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thanks for these information, I’m facing the same problem.
Is there any incidence updating Status Update every 5 minutes instead of 30s?

I’ve got 450Mo but sending data to 4 Back End servers and GW receiving approx 500K message/month

By the way, did you noticed that the RAK7258 GW has 2 options for white list to filter data sent to backend? Not sure to know what’s the OUI list but should reduce network traffic with Network ID list


Hi, this topic is old but interesting. I currently am facing the same question because I will have to by SIM cards with a fitting data volume.

The one question I wasn’t able to answer directly was: How much Bytes does 1 uplink use in average? We have some Megabytes per day in the statistics above, but the really interesting number would be to divide this by the number of packets recieved in that time range. That would make predictions easier.

I am aware that its not possible to exactly predict, its only for a rough roundup.

  1. Its not possible to exactly predict because the data volume per recieved LoRa packet depends on the payload size, too.
  2. A bigger factor will be the packet forwarder: For example, Loriot PF uses HTTPS AFAIK, while other use UDP which (again AFAIK) consumes less data.
  3. the total data usage also depends on how often downlinks are sent to the devices, not only how many uplinks were recieved.
  4. If some gateway management system runs on the gateway, this will use a good amount of data volume.
  5. Some other factors I don’t see now :slight_smile:

Best regards

Hi, I am very interested in this topic too. I am trying to understand the math and it isn’t adding up. I have a RAK7268C connected to TTN and am running 8 sensors. In the past 24 hours the gateway has received approximately 1092 messages from those 8 sensors. The sensors are all Browan sensors (2 TBHH100, 1 TBHV110, 2 TBWL100, 1 TBSL100, 1 TBOL and a MerryIoT CO2).

Assuming each message is 12 bytes (from TBHV110 reference manual), that comes to 13,104 bytes, which is 104,832 bits (~102 Kilobits = ~.1 Mbits). Yet my Hologram account (cellular backhaul) says I used 1 MB of data, which I am interpreting as 1 Mbit. So my calculated data usage is off by a factor of 10.

I can’t prove it, but i am pretty sure that there are no other LoRa sensors on TTN near where I live in the suburbs of Atlanta Georgia. I do have several sensors running on the Helium network, but since they are not joined to the TTN, I assume their data is not being picked up by the gateway.

I am not running a gateway management system.

I have not been able to find data usage metrics on my TTN dashboard.

If anyone has suggestions as to where my math is wrong or other sources of data usage I’d really appreciate the feedback.
Best Regards,
Mike Boucher

Gateways don’t receive - they hear - a subtle difference but for LoRaWAN but an important one - as you’ll see below, gateways hear everything appropriate to their antenna and circuitry.

  • the 13 bytes for the LoRaWAN header. And the TCP header and the IP stuff if on BasicStation or UDP if on Packet Forwarder etc etc

And the gateway alive message that it sends every 30 seconds. Plus any other housekeeping. And any downlinks for the devices.

The devices are all from a known manufacturer so they are unlikely to have gone rogue, but the console will tell you what is arriving.

Do you have an integration that can measure all the info for you?

Given they are an order of magnitude different, it would be best to check. And check it’s not MiB either (you never know if those aliens are tapping in to data streams).

Yes you can, very very easy - watch the gateway console

That’s not how radio works - anything with an approximately correct length piece of straightish metal will pick up the signals. Or fillings in your mouth in the AM band.

So your Helium devices will be transmitting on the same channels, chirping like a LoRa signal does, with a LoRaWAN packet. Gateways can’t decode anything so they will be passing that on to their Network Server for it to figure it all out.

There aren’t any - it doesn’t know about the gateway backhaul as it could be anything.

As the 1MB cost you 8c, you may want to worry about other things.

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Nick - thanks much for the detailed response - that’s very helpful. I’ll look more closely at the gateway console & look at changing my Hologram plan as I am paying $.40/MB on the Pilot plan. Still not a crazy amount, but every little bit helps, especially when considering scaling plans - i.e. multiple gateways and 10s, 100s, or 1000s of sensors.