Want to speed up Android? Tired of waiting on your phone to do stuff? Before you shell out for an expensive upgrade, it’s first worth trying to make an amount out a little extra performance from your current device.
Let’s have a look at some of the best ways to do exactly that including general housekeeping, a bunch of apps and several cool tricks and hacks.
Update your phone
First and foremost, it’s worth making sure your device is completely up to date. Every now and then a newer version of Android, an updated User Interface (UI) skin, a patch, or a bug fix will come along. Any of those may help to speed up Android.
To find out if your phone needs an update while on wifi, Tap Settings > About Device > Software Update.
It’s worth continually checking for updates for specific apps on Google Play Store.
Clear up your home screen
Once in a while, it’s important to clean your home. If you have a home screen with a live wallpaper that’s covered in widgets that show you the news, weather and social feeds, you may notice a little shudder when transitioning between screens.
Switching to a better launcher can also often help to make things move quickly. Rather restrict your layout to a single page with folders, rather than multiple screens. This doesn’t speed up Android, so much as it speeds up the user so I can get to things much quicker.
This little trick is pretty well-known. It won’t actually speed up your phone, but reducing the time it takes to transition between screens and apps makes everything seem faster.
To make this change, you’ll need to access the Developer Options in your device settings (also under Software Update).
Find where it says “Build Number” and tap that option seven times. Now head into the Developer Options menu and find where it says Transition animation scale.
If you set this to “off,” apps will just appear, instead of making a song and dance about it. You can also turn off Window animation scale and Animator duration scale.
Force GPU Rendering
Another trick you can mess around with in here is Force GPU rendering. This will use your phone’s Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) rather than software rendering for some 2D elements that aren’t already taking advantage of this option.
That means faster User Interface (UI) rendering, smoother animations, and more breathing room for your CPU.
Note: The GPU takes more power than the CPU, so this can also reduce battery life by around 5-15 percent.
If you want to speed up your browsing experience, try enabling “Data Saver” mode in Chrome or UCbrowser. This compresses pages, allowing for lower data usage and faster load-times.
This trick will slightly hurt image quality, but many will find that an acceptable compromise. Of course, the web page must first be sent to Google for compression before being sent to your device, so your data speeds may play a factor here.
Clearing cached data
Cached data is information your apps store to help them boot up more quickly and thus speed up Android. A browser might cache images from a website you visit often so it doesn’t need to download the image every single time you load the page.
Cached data should actually make your phone quicker. But it can also have a negative impact if the cache becomes bloated (not to mention if it takes up unnecessary space on your device).
For those apps with caches bulging at the seams, you can remove cached data individually by navigating to App info > Storage > Clear Cache.
Turn off Auto-Sync
If you have a relatively modern phone, chances are it behaves pretty well under most conditions. The one time you might have noticed slow down is when downloading and installing new apps.
Something similar happens all the time behind the scenes when your apps sync. Head to the Accounts menu in your settings and you’ll find the option “Automatically sync data” is tap it on.
You probably don’t want to change this, unless you have an old device purely for gaming or browsing. By selecting individual apps from the list, you should be able to turn some off individually or alter their settings in their own menus.
Avoid task killers
Android devices are actually very efficient when managing their own memory there’s often a reason apps are kept alive. Booting an app from nothing takes longer and uses more battery than switching to one that is paused.
If you open an app that requires more memory, Android will automatically kill the least important ones to free up space.
Take it all to the ground
If nothing is working and you feel your phone has just lost its sheen, one drastic option is to simply perform a factory reset. This can remove any junk you may have accumulated and hopefully get your phone performing like new again.
Now just use all the tricks we’ve listed on that now-clear phone and you should be able to get the max performance possible out of your hardware.