If you’re looking at your cellular data usage in the Settings app on your iPhone, you might notice data usage statistics from a “Current Period.” But what exactly is the current period, and when did it start? Here’s how to find out.

First, we’ll assume you’ve already navigated to Settings > Cellular on your iPhone. If not, open the Settings app and tap “Cellular” in the list.

In iPhone Settings, tap "Cellular."

Below a bank of options near the top of the “Cellular” settings page, you’ll see a section titled “Cellular Data.” At the top of that, you’ll see “Current Period” with a cumulative data count beside it. This is how much cellular data you’ve used in total during the current period.

If you’ve never checked this statistic in Settings before, this number can look frighteningly large. So the big question remains: How long is this current period, and when did it start?

The "Current Period" stat in iPhone Cellular settings. What is the current period?

It turns out that, on some cellular carriers, this “Current Period” is tied to your actual cell phone billing cycle. On other carriers, the “Current Period” is an arbitrary length of time since you last reset your cellular statistics.

If you have hundreds of apps installed on your iPhone, you might never notice that you can scroll all the way to the bottom of the app list and see the date when the “current period” statistics were last reset.

At the bottom of Cellular settings, you'll see the date the current period started.

To reset the statistics for the current period, tap “Reset Statistics.”

Warning: You’ll lose all your stored cellular data statistics, and the counts will reset to zero.

Tap "Reset Statistics" to reset your iPhone cellular data and call time statistics.

With a tap of “Reset Statistics,” a new “Current Period” has just begun. Check back in Settings > Cellular over time to see your statistics and which apps are using the most data. Good luck!

RELATED: How to See Which Apps Are Using Cellular Data on iPhone

Profile Photo for Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is a former Associate Editor for How-To Geek. Now, he is an AI and Machine Learning Reporter for Ars Technica. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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