Is Bloatware Strangling Your Android Mobile Phone?

The term ‘bloatware’ refers to software that has too many features and too much functionality. Up until a few years ago, programmers and developers were very conscious of how much memory space their software would take up. Most computers and laptops now have huge memory capacity, so there is less focus on the need for software to be efficient. However, mobile phones and smartphones have limited memory space, and bloatware can be a problem.

Mobile phone manufacturers design their devices to be packed with features and easy to use. For this reason, they come loaded with a range of apps to help you do everything from send emails to record voice memos. Not all of these apps are things you would choose to have installed on your mobile phone, and they can take up a lot of the device’s memory capacity. Unfortunately, removing these apps isn’t always easy.

Bloatware can be a particular problem for Android mobile phones. Unwanted apps can slow the performance of an Android device and cause freezing and crashing problems. Battery life can also be affected by bloatware. Many Android smartphone users don’t realise that bloatware apps may be constantly running in the background on their device. Tackling problems related to bloatware can result in much faster performance from a mobile device.

Samsung Galaxy S4 users have raised a number of complaints about the performance of their devices, and this can be traced back to bloatware issues. Although the S4 is advertised as having 16GB of internal memory, around 7GB of this is taken up by pre-installed apps and software. Samsung are considering increasing the memory capacity of future smartphones in response to customer feedback. One solution to the problem is to store music and photographs on a micro-SD card, but apps can’t be stored in this way.

Removing pre-installed software and apps from a smartphone is highly technical and requires a good understanding of their operating systems. It’s not advisable to attempt such procedures, and there are other solutions to the bloatware problem. Removing apps installed by a manufacturer may invalidate a warranty.

The solution to the Galaxy S4’s bloatware problem is actually quite easy, and a similar process works for many other Android devices. By accessing the Application Manager on the phone you can select apps to disable. It’s important not to disable system processes as you carry out this tidying up exercise, so only select specific apps which you know the mobile phone doesn’t need. Icons related to the disabled apps should disappear from the screen as you carry out this process.

Disabling bloatware isn’t the only way to speed up your Android mobile phone and improve its battery life. Widgets use processing capacity and battery power, and are often running in constantly in the background. Delete any widgets which you don’t really need on a regular basis. Live wallpapers can also consume your mobile phone’s resources, so consider switching to a basic wallpaper for improved efficiency.

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