What is Google Backup Transport and how do I make it stop using cell data?

What phone do you have?
Moto X4
What plan are you on?
My Choice + 1gb


Issue Description

My data usage is listing “google backup transport” as the third biggest cell data user for the month. I have played with as many settings as I can in likely apps, and I cannot figure out exactly what is using this service or how to deny it cell phone access! Looking through the forums it looks like a likely candidate is google photos backup, but I have “cellular data backup” turned off for photos. I can’t find any other setting regarding wifi vs cell data use under other google settings. Any suggestions?

I don’t know if it is related, but when I look at pictures in my camera app (the default photos app that came with the phone), if I try to look through old photos it takes me to the google app even for photos that I know are stored locally on my phone. Previously it used to take me to the gallery of photos on my phone. I’m not sure exactly when this changed, if it was with an update or if it was always here on the new phone, but I wonder if when I try to look at photos this is part of the google update data. Is there anyway to disconnect the camera app from google photos so I only see local photos unless I actively open the google photos app? Any other thoughts or suggestions on why google backup transport is a data hog?

It’s part of Google Play services. Perhaps some of the advice in this article will help: What Is Google Play Services, and Why Is It Draining My Battery?

Newer Moto phones no longer ship with Motorola’s Gallery app and Google Photos is now intended for use both for photos stored in the cloud and those on the phone.

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Hi @juliek - Looks like @rolandh answered your basic questions. I wanted to let you know there are some other data management tools available in both the RW app (Data Freeze) and Android (Data Saver). Not sure that either one will address the specific apps or functions you asked about. Thought you might want to know about these tools just in case data use becomes a bigger issue and you need to have more control.

There are several articles on the RW site. Instead of pasting a bunch of links it’s easier if you simply enter DATA FREEZE in the sites Help Center search function and you’ll get several articles.

Using either data freeze or data saver functions can impact daily phone use so make sure you read all the notes in any of the articles. YMMV in how useful these functions are but it’s always good to have more information to work with :smiley:

I have seen a spike in Google Backup transport data usage since I started listening to podcasts using Google Play Music… I usually download on WiFi but once in a while I will download/stream on cell.

If you listen to podcasts or other online content on Google Play Music…take a look at that usage. There are separate options to download and stream on WiFi only. I keep my player in downloaded only mode for the most part…but whenever I do turn the “tap” on…there is usually a deluge of data usage!

When you look at the per app data usage in RW app…if you tap on the app name…you can see the app’s per day usage within the total data usage per day…this might be helpful in identifying if your Google Backup transport data usage is evenly spread out over the month…or spiked on certain days…that might help you zero in on the apps used on those days of high cell data usage.

Try grabbing Google Datally, helps to manage the data leakage pretty well.

Thanks. I don’t want to do a data freeze since I need to use the relay app to contact kids! I miss the ability on old interfaces to prevent certain apps from using data. I think I need to give in and install a third party app to do that, particularly since some interaction of my phone and my house wifi means I often end up with WiFi cutting out without me noticing - I made the mistake of allowing Google play to update apps in an area with weak wifi earlier and oops, data spike :frowning:

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