Social apps are the worst for data, battery and performance hits, finds AVG

by: Robert TriggsOctober 20, 2015

Android Marshmallow App Drawer

AVG has just released its latest quarterly report into the biggest offending apps when it comes to data consumption, battery sapping and performance draining. There are a number of familiar faces in the rankings, along with a few new entries since the last report.

AVG collects this data anonymously from its AVG AntiVirus & AVG Cleaner apps for Android, from users based in the US, UK and Australia. It then ranks software into four categories based on actual data collected from apps installed on devices. The chart below gives an overall summary of the worst offenders of apps started up by users:

AVG app report Q2 2015

Despite its relatively short burst usage profile, Snapchat replaces Facebook as the biggest performance draining app, due to its simultaneous use of WiFi, GPS information and your phone’s camera. In fact, Snapchat features in the top five in three of the four main categories that AVG investigated. Steaming apps, such as Spotify, obviously eat up quite a bit of data, but Google’s Chrome is actually the second worst app in this category. Notably, it is the only web browser to make its way into any of these categories.

Arguably the worst apps are those which run at start-up, rather than those started by the user, as these will continue to impact your device’s performance, data usage and battery life simply by booting your device up. Here’s AVG’s list:

AVG startup app report Q2 2015

It is here that we do see Facebook once again topping the rankings in three out of the four categories, as the worst culprit for performance impact, data usage and storage consumption. Fortunately it is not the worst app for battery performance, which is claimed by the Android firmware updater process and a selection of other Samsung applications. Social media clearly takes up quite a bit of data, but so does rival anti-virus firm Avast’s app and The Weather Channel app, both of which probably shouldn’t be using up so much background data.

AVG proposes a selection of fixes if you are worried about these apps bogging down your device. The company recommends cleaning out your browser history and cache files regularly, limiting your time spent with some apps and ensuring that your software is kept up to date to avoid services prompting you.

For a full look at the detailed report, click on the source link below.

  • Paolo T.

    Don’t be lazy. Use Facebook on Chrome (or Firefox, or whatever.)

    • Robert Dunn

      It’s not about being lazy, it’s about wanting all-day battery life.

      • Paolo T.

        But people don’t even WANT to consider any alternative. They wait on the off-chance that Facebook’ll magically fix their Android app (spoiler alert: They’ll NEVER.)

  • Peter Mulders

    Interesting for when you have limited data and a ruined battery. If not, useless information.

    • Akash Ashik

      bro nope it’s not useless information! battery drain is the main issue here…so you telling we should run around with a powerbank lol

      • Peter Mulders

        No I’m just saying that when your phone has a big enough battery to get you through a day it doesn’t matter that these apps use a lot of battery. Same goes for data if your bundle is big enough.

  • Glenn Gore

    I deleted the Facebook app from my iPhone 6 yesterday morning with battery at 100%. Used my phone normally all day, left it on overnight, and have 80% battery this morning! I am not one who looks at Facebook every 3 minutes either, but this app must be doing some serious background work all the time to have this much effect. From now on its just using Safari to check into Facebook for me.

    • Robert Dunn

      I’ve been doing the same on my LG G4 as well. I can’t stand the official Facebook app’s battery consumption and since I don’t have root on this phone (in which case I would have used Greenify to keep it dormant), I’d rather just not install it altogether).

  • Пешо Пешев

    Seriously? They invent wheel again… Fucking morons…

  • Syukri Lajin

    “Fortunately it is not the worst app for battery performance, which is claimed by the Android firmware updater process” – is it even fair to put Android firmware updater here? I mean, it’s a bloody UPDATER, it’s supposed to run during bootup at full performance to update your phone. Especially with ART(lollipop+).

    • Akash Ashik

      yup lol i agree with you :D

  • FlutterRage

    Breaking news: Scientists found out that water is wet.

  • Yes have to agree, Facebook & Chrome really impact performance. I replaced FB app with FB Lite and Chrome with Opera. The difference in notable.

    • Roby

      Opera Mini ftw. Transfers the least data and doesn’t make the CPU go into overdrive.

    • Aviral Noth’n

      With the kind of processors and RAM phones today have, I could care less. I mean, so what if they hog resources, with an octacore processor and 4gigs ram why should it be an issue. Given that nothing can replace Chrome for someone who relies of Google syncing.

    • wrkerr

      My wife and I both use to use Facebook Lite and appreciated it’s “lightness,” but it certainly lacked some features. I recently left FB Lite and switched to Metal, and I highly recommend it.

      My wife switched to just using Chrome, and allowing it to push notifications.

  • Erik Sala

    If Facebook is indeed the problem, the solution is simple, other than not using it completely, why not just use Chrome or Opera. It now pushes website notifications to your device. Firefox will have this same feature by November too.

  • JY

    without facebook running in background battery life improved maybe thats why the s6 has battery problems facebook is cant be uninstalled i dont think and google play services are broken

  • John

    Since the beginning of ice cream sandwich facebook is just the worst of the worst app, i remembered when i used to have my old phone which was by that time can install the facebook because its just 35mb, but once i have log on it eats up a 100mb+ of storage, even if i tap on the clear data its still there by that time i have not installed facebook on my old phone and by that time also FB lite is still not available just recently though. Still facebook is updating its official app, on its page on the play store it says “Bug fix and stability improvements” but there are not improvements on the storage and also memory usage.

  • neonix

    With Sony’s STAMINA mode (only apps I specifically choose can use data when the phone screen is off) and/or Greenify to hibernate Facebook, and App Ops to ignore Facebook’s auto-start and location permissions, I have zero issues.

    I load up Facebook when I want it, then close it, and it dies. It never runs without me explicitly telling it to and it never shows up on my battery usage page.

  • Falenone

    AVG is worried about data, yet they are stealing users data to sell it to some shitty ad companies. Fuck AVG