By Alexandra Burlacu | Oct 25, 2013 10:12 AM EDT
Microsoft has confirmed that a bug in its Windows Phone 8 (WP8) OS is allowing the built-in Twitter feature to drain data even when idle.
The issue in the backend of the Twitter app is reportedly causing the Windows Phone 8 handset to re-download Twitter contact images again and again, on a regular basis. The Verge discovered the problem nearly a week ago and reported it to Microsoft.
"On one of our own Windows Phone devices we found that the People hub, the section that hosts the built-in Twitter client, had used over 300MB of mobile data and over 3GB of Wi-Fi data in just under a week," reports the publication. "The data drain occurs even if you don't use the People hub. It's not clear exactly when the issue started, but the level of data use will depend on how many Twitter contacts Windows Phone users have listed in the People hub."
"Verge readers have confirmed the issue on a variety of handsets, and we understand it's not related to any specific Windows Phone update so any device could experience the problem. Some readers have reported 530MB of data use for the People hub in the last 30 days, and others have seen 412 MB of data use. If you're on a 512MB or 1GB monthly limit, then that's a significant problem."
Microsoft is reportedly working to fix the issue. However, considering that the problem stems from a Twitter backend change, Microsoft has limited power over the situation. Twitter is currently moving its profile pictures from one server to another.
Until a viable solution becomes available and fixes this data-draining issue, Windows Phone 8 users can remove Twitter accounts from their handset to prevent such excessive data use. Twitter should complete its profile images server migration in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, Microsoft tried to minimize the impact by implementing a change to sync Twitter accounts only once a day. While it's not a final solution, it may help keep data drainage to a minimum. If you haven't checked your data usage so far, it might be a good idea to do it now.
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