Data usage for SketchUp Free on wireless network


I was just curious about how much data is used loading and using the Free version.



in the last 30 days my wireless service has logged 11 gigs in chrome of which 75 mb was SU…but I don’t use it much. I’m sure you realize windows 10 tracks that for you.


That seems about normal to me. SketchUp Free does not require much from your internet connection; it really only uses the network when you open or save a model. Or download a model from 3D Warehouse.


I thought it was pretty reasonable.


That’s a bit mis-leading. Opening and saving just one 50mb file 20 times in a month is easily 2 gigs of data (1 upload and 1 download per session). And that’s assuming your only working with one fairly small file. Add-in warehouse downloads - and now uploads - data usage could easily get out of hand. Free should be used primarily over a WiFi connection unless you’ve got unlimited mobile data.


Unlimited data is awesome. Largest SU file I ever had was under 30mb


Out of curiosity, what sort model are you creating in SketchUp Free that is 5o mb?


That’s true- but it is still much less than streaming audio or video demand. And probably not wildly out of line with the typical bandwidth usage that comes from working with 3D Warehouse models in SketchUp Make.

The actual blob of executable code that you have to download into your browser cache the first time you start SketchUp Free is far more compact than the full SketchUp Make installer. From that point on, bandwidth consumption depends primarily on model size.



I don’t use free, nor would I - online seems like a dumb idea in general. I’m an architect and urban designer and our files are regularly over 500mbs. It’s fairly easy once you start adding in high quality textures and populate a model with furniture, landscapes, and cities.

That being said - I don’t think anyone should be recommending that free should be used over mobile data. It’s too easy to download a bunch of models from the 3D warehouse that are huge, creating SketchUp files that are even larger. Plus it doubles the data that you use because you’ll need to both download and upload files from the 3D warehouse, in addition to all of the data that it takes to stream free to your browser. Free should be used sparingly on mobile unless your really confident about model sizes.


I guess that’s really dependent on where you live and the deal you have with your data provider. If you have an unlimited data plan, I don’t see how it makes much difference to you what kind of network you’re using.


Of course it’ll depend on the market your in - but I don’t think it shouldn’t be considered a recommended option considering unlimited data plans are still a rarity in most markets. It’s also silly to assume the people using the free version of the software (students, hobbyists) will have the most expensive data plans in their respective markets.


I agree that our browser-based SketchUp Free won’t perform as well as our desktop client applications on models of more than 500mb. SketchUp Pro is a better solution for you.

Is there a place where we make that recommendation? I’d be happy to revise the system requirements if you think we are making misleading claims about performance.


I think that use case will be small. This is still mainly a desktop application not for tablets/phones so the majority of users are going to be on desktop or laptop on Wi-Fi.

Most markets dont have small data caps anymore, they may have slow connections but that’s less of an issue I suppose.

Before I got my latest job I was working on and off for the largest data provider in Africa. They are laying fibre down likes there’s no tomorrow from Egypt to Cape Town.

Ed: The problem with slow internet in the UK for example is the prohibitive costs to upgrade the old copper networks. But in emerging markets where you never had original infrastructure it’s much quicker to expand.

Hopefully in an update what might be helpful is if the local machine just does a handshake with the browser and you can run it offline. You can then download to desktop or re-connect to the cloud for saving.

Netflix are doing a massive expansion into a lot of emerging markets at the moment, they use way more data than model files when streaming. I think it’s just the new norm now.

In Central London in 2016 I had 14Mb/s, In Sweden I have 1000MB/s because of the new infrastructure.


I’d also say Make users are equally or more prone to creating large models. You see this when going through the 3D warehouse and relatively simple objects approach 10 - 20mbs a piece.



The models I make at work today are far smaller than those I made as a kid for 2 reasons. Now I have deadline and defined project scope which I din’t then. I have also learned to avoid third party 3D Warehouse models as much as I possibly can.


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