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Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Why is my Android device running slow? Here's how to speed up your phone

You were probably blown away by how fast your Android phone was when you first bought it. But over time you may have noticed it running more slowly. That doesn't mean there's anything wrong with it, and there are several things you can do to stop it. Here are out best tips to help speed up your phone again.
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Just about every phone on the market is liable to suffer from slow-down at some point. Your Galaxy S5 could slow to a crawl, or your Moto X (2014) may motor less than it used to. You may notice that apps take longer to load than they used to, that there is a lag between tapping an option and an app responding, or things may just feel generally sluggish. You don’t need to put up with this. Try some of the following techniques to speed up Android.

1. Identify the problem

The first thing to do is find out what is causing the problems: an app, multiple apps, the system itself? Trepn Profiler by Qualcomm will show you the real-time CPU load for individual cores, an overview of network traffic for both data and Wi-Fi, GPU loads and RAM usage (and that's just for starters).
AndroidPIT Trepn Profiler main menu overlay
The first thing to do is identify the problem. Qualcomm's Trepn Profiler can help. / © ANDROIDPIT
Trepn can also produce app-specific or system-wide profiles and contains various methods for displaying accumulated data. You can save your profiled data for offline viewing and analysis and even have performance overlays on running apps. Once you've figured out your specific issue, you can move on to the solutions below.
AndroidPIT Trepn Profiler performance graph app profiler
Real-time CPU usage for individual cores (left) and app profiling options (right). / © ANDROIDPIT
Trepn ProfilerInstall on Google Play

2. Running out of space

All those photos you've taken and all of those apps you’ve installed can take their toll. Your phone needs a little breathing room to run smoothly and if it's running low on space, it can start to slow down.
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Android includes various ways to free up space and help speed up your device. / © ANDROIDPIT
You can check how much space you have left by heading to the Storage section of Settings. One of the first ways to free up space is to tap Applications can see which apps you can uninstall.
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If you've been using your phone for a while, there are probably several apps you can remove. / © ANDROIDPIT
Tap the entry for an app you no longer need and then tap Uninstall. You can repeat this process as many times as necessary for any apps you feel you can live without.
There are other ways you can free up space. The files you have downloaded are probably still sitting in storage wasting space and can be removed. In storage, tap Downloads, select the files you want to remove and then tap the Bin button.
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Downloads and app caches occupy valuable space that could be put to better use. / © ANDROIDPIT
Many of the apps you have installed use data caches in an attempt to speed up operations. This is effective up to a point, but if you are running short of space, it can actually be counter-productive. To free up this space, hit the Cached data option and then tap OK to confirm.
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Free up as much space as possible, and you might be surprised at the difference it makes. / © ANDROIDPIT
More files ripe for deletion can be found in the 'Miscellaneous files' section. Tick the boxes next to any types of file you'd like to remove - backups, files received via Bluetooth, playlist files, and so on - and then tap the bin button. You can keep an eye on how much space you have freed up by looking at the 'Available space' section.
You can also disable any apps that came pre-loaded on your phone but you don’t use. If you have rooted your Android, you can get rid of these apps easily. If not, you can simply go to the app properties and disable the app to prevent it from running and using up your phone’s resources.

3. Cut back widgets

All those widgets you have running on your home screen may be useful, but they also take up their fair share of resources.
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Widgets can be a waste of resources, so kill any you don't really need. / © ANDROIDPIT
If you have any widgets running that you don’t really need, consider disabling them. There's no harm in having some active, but you will notice an element of slow-down if you have too many running at the same time, so just be a little selective.

4. Animations and extras

Depending on the launcher you are using, you may find that there are various animations and special effects in place. These may look great, but they can also slow things down.
Check in your launcher's settings to see if there is a way to disable any of these unnecessary extras, and you could earn yourself a speed boost.
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Those fancy extras offered by your launcher of choice could be slowing down your device / © ANDROIDPIT

5. Close apps and free up RAM

Multi-tasking several apps makes it easy to switch between different tools, but there can also be an impact on performance. You can quickly close down any apps you are no longer using by calling up the running apps list - press and hold the home key and then swipe away any apps you want to exit.
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Terminating unused apps and freeing up RAM will help with the speed of your device. / © ANDROIDPIT
While you are at this screen, tap the pie chart button to the lower right of the screen and then move to the RAM section. Tap the Clear memory button and any background processes that are running unnecessarily will be closed down.

6. Restart your device

A quick and simple fix for a slow device is to simply restart it. This can clear out the cache, stop unnecessary tasks from running, and get things running smoothly again.
Just hold down the power button, select the Restart option, and then tap OK to confirm.
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Sometimes, something as simple as a restart is all that's needed for a speed boost. / © ANDROIDPIT

7. Dig deeper

Don't forget you can also keep tabs on the apps using lots of battery by going to Settings > Battery. You can also monitor RAM usage in Settings > Apps (or App Manager, depending on your brand of phone) and there's even more nerdy goodies in Process Stats in Developer Options – if you don't have this setting enabled, go to Settings > About Phone and tap Build Number seven times until a notification pops up.
We've shared some other great apps for monitoring system performance on Android, apps to give your Android a performance boost and tips to increase available RAM on Android. From what we can see Trepn Profiler deserves a rightful place amongst these other A-listers.
Do you have any tips and techniques you use to speed up your phone? Do you have any apps you use optimize the process?

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