There’s really no better way to describe Onavo other than a must-have app for any and every iPhone user on a data plan. I’ll go a step further: I think it’s the very first app one should install.
Why? Because Onavo shrinks your data usage (and thus, your bills).
All you need to do is install the free app and you’re done. The app will then run in the background and do its thing and all you have to do is continue consuming data as you do today … surfing the web, emailing, tweeting, using maps, etc.
The techies among you are asking yourself whether there’s any slow-down in data speed. I’ve been using the app for a few weeks and I have perceived no noticeable slow-down.
What happens behind the scenes is that compression technology resides on Onavo’s cloud servers. Once the data is routed through them, the compression takes place before the data reaches the device (or the carrier).
Onavo is targeting travelers who have a very obvious pain-point of being forced to purchase ridiculously expensive data plans when on business or personal trips. Mind you, saving 5MB-15MB in data usage can equal direct savings that can go as high as $50 and up. However, with all-you-can-eat data plans a thing of the past, I contend that Onavo provides significant value for domestic data usage as well. I, for example, keep it running all the time.
I’m currently away on business in San Francisco (I’m based out of Israel) and in the past two days alone I’ve saved 11.32MB, and I still have four nights to go. Most of my savings were with Maps on iPhone, where Onavo saved me 75%, or 8.87MB of 11.80MB. Onavo also saved me 64% surfing the Web, and 12% on email.
To the best of my assessment, this is an upside-only app. And being free, there’s really nothing that should hold you back from downloading it.