Counters: Track & Limit SMS, Call & Data Usage On Nokia Windows Phone
When the Lumia series was first unveiled, Nokia did not take full advantage of the OS customization rights that Microsoft had granted them. Nokia’s own version of Windows Phone wasn’t too different from the one rolled out for other OEMs, which proved to be a bit disappointing for most WP7 fans, but thankfully, the folks over at Nokia seem to be determined to make everything right and give their customers special treatment by rolling out a slew of Nokia-exclusive Mango apps. The latest addition to the Nokia Collection section of the Marketplace is Counters. The app is sure to prove useful for almost all Lumia owners, as the functionality it brings to the mix is pretty basic, yet important. Using the Counters app, you will be able to view all the usage stats related to your monthly calls, text messages and internet data. And that’s just half of it! The app can also be used to place restrictions on all the aforementioned items, so that you can stay within your phone budget each month...
To get the most out of Counters, it is better if you set the limits on calls, SMS and data usage before doing anything else. To do that, you will have to select a time period that will instigate the reset of all monthly counters. You can choose any day of the month as the reset day. Once that has been done, hit the ‘+’ button located in the bottom bar of the limits screen. The next step is to choose the item for which you want to define the restriction. For calls, users are allowed to allocate a fixed number of minutes for each month. SMS limit is in terms of number of texts sent, while data limit can be in terms of MB or GB. The usage area of Counters summarizes the used and remaining quantity for each item.
Tapping any of the 3 tiles in the usage section will take you to their details screen. You can view things like Longest Call, Average Call length and download/upload data quantities. These details are divided intoMonthly and Total subsections to give users a better idea of the way they are using their phone. In the Calls and SMS screens, there is also a Top Contacts menu that can be used to view the people you have interacted with the most. Counters displays both incoming and outgoing calls/ SMS from your top contacts.
So, what happens when you reach the limits you set in Counters? Ideally, the app should provide you with notifications regarding the limits, but as Contacts is in beta for now, this feature might not work for most users. There are other minor issues too, like the lack of counting of conference calls, but overall, the app isn’t too bad, specially given the fact that it is available as a free download for all Nokia WP7 users.