‘Data Bank’ Of Mum & Dad: Raising A Child Costs 6.9 TB Of Data In Their Lifetime

Three UK doubles its data donation to 2million GB in support

New research commissioned by Three, the UK’s Fastest 5G Network, reveals the average parent uses 6.9 terabytes of data in their lifetime to raise a child. That’s the equivalent of streaming 27,576 episodes of Peppa Pig in HD or playing Baby Shark on repeat 1.8 million times. On a monthly basis, parents (39 per cent) are twice as likely to go over their data allowance than the regular Brit (19 per cent).

Data usage for parents spikes significantly as they find themselves on their phones more often with the devices becoming critically important in their lives after having a child. Three has partnered with recent father and British musician, Professor Green, to highlight the importance of connectivity as a new parent.

Professor Green said, “When I became a father, I found out that phones become your second or third pair of hands. They are an amazing source of information, advice and connect you to your support network when you need it most.”

Whether their phones help them stay awake during the midnight feed, stream hours of Peppa Pig to keep the kids entertained, call mum or dad for advice or constantly research online, phones are invaluable tools for parents with the survey revealing parents have on average 16 apps on their device that help them get by.

As proof of this, a recent poll of 1,000 parents with children aged up to six had 74 per cent stating their phone has helped them during a ‘really difficult moment as a parent’. Over half of parents (43 per cent) state they have ‘no idea’ how people raised children before smartphones. A further 61 per cent revealed their device is the most helpful tool when it comes to bringing up their little one.


With parents and phones going hand in hand, Three has looked into the most data-hungry activities.

Downloading or streaming content for themselves or their child is a big drain; on average 12 hours per week getting streamed. Parents also frequently ‘Google’ for advice and information, with the average parent admitting to hitting the search bar 11 times a day with parenting queries.

67 per cent of parents admit to using their phone the most to capture memories of their child, and will take an average of 23 photos of their son or daughter each week. This is followed by WhatsApp (62 per cent), with the average parents sending 11 messages to those closest to them over the course of seven days.

As a result of parents using their phones more, 34 per cent of new mums and dads have had to increase their data after having a child, while other parents go over their designated data allowance each month by 5GB.


Mobile phone data plays a critical role in modern-day life, especially when it comes to parenting, but with poverty in the UK on the rise, 85% of low-income houses say connectivity is an issue for them.

In response, Three UK is working with the UK’s leading digital inclusion charity, Good Things Foundation on their National Data Bank, to double its data donation to 2million gigabytes, with SIM cards to be distributed over the next two years. This will ensure people can use their phone freely wherever they need to, whenever they need to.

The National Databank keeps people connected by providing free pre-paid SIM cards for those who are unable to afford or access them. Be it streaming during the 2am feed or keeping the kids amused on-the-go, Three has pledged to help get everyone connected.

Professor Green continues, “Phones are amazing tools but even more so when you’re a new parent. They are a direct line to gran when you’re in an emergency, they are a vital research tool when the little one is feeling ill or the source of much needed entertainment, for you and the kid, while you’re on the move.

“All the things you took for granted about your phone before, suddenly become a blessing as a parent. That’s why it’s so important to help people that need to be connected, like new parents, get connected. As a father, I’m proud to back the latest Three UK pledge with Good Things Foundation that will help people get online.”

Aislinn O’Connor, Director of Marketing at Three UK said, “At Three, we know the important role connectivity plays in our customers’ lives. As the research we commissioned shows, this role becomes even more important after you’ve had a child. Your phone becomes a critical support tool to your family, playing the role of entertainer, doctor, connector and much more in everyday life.

“Through our pledge of 2million gigabytes of data to Good Things Foundation, we’ll ensure people across the country get online and in doing so, that thousands of parents are able to use connectivity as a helping hand in their new family.”

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