Which Android apps are the biggest battery guzzlers?

Here are the top 10 apps that are slowing your smartphone down and eating scarce storage and battery resources.


The top 10 performance-guzzling Android apps. Image: AVG

A new survey of 200 million Android devices reveals which apps are chewing up the most of your precious battery, storage, and data resources.

The new report from security firm AVG identifies a few usual battery-drain suspects, such as Facebook, and some surprises, such as Chrome, which has grown to become a storage hog.

Facebook has been causing battery drain issues for iPhone users, but according to AVG, the biggest battery draining apps that run at startup on Android – of which Facebook is one – is the Android Firmware Updater.

The next significant battery-guzzlers include Samsung’s ChatOn, Samsung Beaming Service, Samsung Security Policy Updater, and Google Play Services. Rounding out the top 10 are Facebook, WhatsApp, Candy Camera for Selfies, Lookout security, and the Weather & Clock Widget Android.

AVG doesn’t have an explanation for why Android Firmware Updater is so power-hungry but one method of fixing it would be either to install updates as they arrive or to turn off automatic checking and update apps manually.

Otherwise identified as ‘com.sec.android.fwupgrade’, the feature is responsible for delivering periodic Samsung updates to Android devices via wi-fi, according to AVG.

Samsung apps do appear frequently in the survey. But that might partially be explained by Samsung devices representing nine of the top 10 devices in AVG’s user base.

However, Facebook is considered to have the biggest overall impact on Android devices, since it consumes the highest amount of data traffic and storage among apps that run at startup.

It’s followed by Google Play Services, Facebook Pages Manager, Blackberry BBM, Words With Friends, Instagram, Facebook Messenger, OoVo, ChatOn, and the Weather Channel.

According to AVG, the two apps that shouldn’t be among the top performance drainers are the Weather Channel and Words With Friends, since there’s no good reason why they should be operating in the background, compared with apps like Messenger that do need to check for notifications.

Facebook Pages Manager appears there due to its storing local content as it transfers page statistics, followers, and comments.

When it comes to apps consciously activated by the user, Snapchat is found to have the biggest overall impact since it is the second-biggest battery drainer behind Samsung’s WatchOn, and the third highest source of data traffic, behind Netflix and Tumblr.

Facebook also took top spot as the top storage hog on Android for apps that run at startup. It is followed by Sp-Mode Mail, Instagram, Facebook Pages Manager, Google Play Services, Skype, Google Search, words with Friends, Tango, and We Chat.

The biggest storage hog among apps run by the user is Spotify Music, largely due to its offline feature. Chrome is the second on this metric, due to its browser cache. Others include Amazon Kindle, Aillis, Amazon Shopping UK, Line, SoundCloud, TripAdvisor, Amazon Shopping Global, and Snapchat.

AVG took its measurements using its own AVG Cleaner and AVG antivirus for Android apps.

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