How to speed up Chrome for Android

by: Edgar CervantesMarch 29, 2016
1.3K
Chrome browser teaser 1

It always happens. Everything is running smoothly and snappy when you first start using a smartphone. Things sure start magically slowing down with time, though. And what frustrates me more is when I start noticing the Chrome browser getting sluggish.

If you have stumbled across this article chances are you find yourself in the same boat as me and are looking to find a solution. Speed and power can be limited by hardware capabilities, but there are a few tricks that will speed up your Chrome browser. Let’s go through some of them.

Ghostery Browser best security apps for androidSee also: 10 best Android browsers of 201694
GoogleChrome

Turn on Data Saver

Remember there are two main factors that come into play when measuring browser performance: hardware and data speeds. It doesn’t matter if you have the fastest smartphone in the world, the browser will only be as fast as your data speeds allow it to be (same goes the other way around). But what if you could make your smartphone use less data?

That is exactly what the Data Saver feature does. In essence, turning this option on will send data to Google’s servers to be compressed and optimized for the smartphone experience. After all, you don’t need to load those large images just to have them displayed on a tiny screen, right?

Google Chrome Data Saver compression-proxy

Not only will this make your browsing a bit faster, but it will also help cut down data consumption. We all know how expensive data can be these days; and even if you have an unlimited internet pool, most carriers will throttle you if you get too wild.

How to turn on Data Saver: 

  • Open Chrome.
  • Hit the 3-dot menu button on the top-right corner of the screen.
  • Select “Settings”.
  • Scroll down and select “Data Saver”.
  • Toggle the setting on.

Kill the cache from time to time

Cache is actually a good thing. It loads browsing data and saves it in your local storage. When you load a page, it is much faster for the browser to simply pull the stored data, as opposed to downloading it all over again.

The problem comes when you have too much cache data stored, as the files can get fragmented and corrupted, causing your browser to slow down. Make sure to clear your browsing cache from time to time, just to keep things fresh. It will create longer loading times right after the fact, but things should be looking better in no time.

Cache
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How to clear cache on Chrome for Android:

  • Go to the phone’s Settings app.
  • Select “Apps”.
  • Scroll down to Chrome and tap on it.
  • Select “Storage”.
  • Select “Clear cache”.
AndroidSee also: Android device running slow? Here’s how to speed up your phone37

Get rid of Javascript?

What’s that question mark all about? Well, the thing is Javascript is actually an awesome part of our daily browsing experience. It is what makes some website as dynamic and fun as they are. Javascript allows for web app interaction, endless scrolling pages, social buttons and more.

Can you live without Javascript? Some people probably can’t, but those who can will find that disabling it will make their experience much faster. Not to mention, doing this will also get rid of certain ads and other elements some people may find annoying. Just make sure you understand what is going on if you want to go this route.

Javascript
Shutterstock

How to disable Javascript on Chrome for Android:

  • Open Chrome for Android.
  • Tap on the 3-dot menu button in the top-right corner.
  • Select “Settings”.
  • Select “Site settings”.
  • Tap on “Javascript”.
  • Toggle the switch off.

Prefetch Page Resources

Prefetch is a Chrome feature that will begin loading sites you are likely to click on. This means a site will often be pre-loaded before you even decide to go into it. It makes the whole experience much faster in many occasions, but there is one downside.

By default, Prefetch is on only when you are on WiFi, but you can set it to stay active all the time. The main issue here is that doing this may waste a lot of data. This is not cool if you are on a tight internet budget, but if you don’t mind wasting megabytes away you will probably enjoy the added speed.

Android Marshmallow Chrome Custom Tabs 3

How to manage Prefetch option:

  • Open Chrome.
  • Tap on the 3-dot menu button on the top-right corner.
  • Select “Settings”.
  • Select “Privacy”.
  • Tap on “Prefetch page resources” and select “Always”.

Use Chrome shortcuts on your home screen

Maybe your browser is as fast as it can be, so the most sensible solution is to adapt to it and find your own ways to get where you want to be in a faster manner. One way to do this is by using home screen shortcuts for your most visited websites.

Maybe you are always checking Android Authority; why not put it right in your home screen? This will save you the trouble of actually going into the browser and finding the site manually.

Chrome browser Facebook web view shortcut

How to make a website shortcut on Chrome:

  • Open Chrome.
  • Go to the site you want to create a shortcut for.
  • Hit the 3-dot menu button on the top-right corner of the screen.
  • Select “Add to Home screen”.
  • Edit the title as you wish.
  • A shortcut will appear on your screen.

Keep Chrome up to date

Remember Chrome gets constant updates and the team is always trying to keep things snappy, while adding features and killing bugs. Always make sure your Chrome browser is up to the latest version. This will improve the chances of it running smoothly.

best free android apps

Wrapping up

Those are only a few ways to speed up Chrome without making too much of a mess. Do you have any other tricks for speeding up the browsing experience on Android? We know there are certain Chrome flags that used to work, but Google has taken most away, so we thought it wasn’t worth adding them to the list. Hit the comments and share your thoughts, experiences and tips!

  • Tengku Izzuddin

    USE CHROMER FFS!

    • Fredrol

      Soo.. What is that?

      • Richard Riker

        I think he means Chromer…an app to use the chrome custom tabs as a browser…kind off.

  • Kyle Muir

    Samsung stock browser with Crystal adblock. Done. You’re welcome.

    • Arman

      Not everyone has a Samsung phone…

      • Jamie Moulding

        That’s why Samsung internet is available on the play store

        • Arman

          You can only install it on Samsung phones, not even all of them. Here’s the message you get if your device is not a supported Samsung model:

          This app is incompatible with all of your devices.

    • trob6969

      i found Ghostery browser to be noticably faster

  • Beebs

    Or why don’t you just install chrome beta which incorporates most of these elements by default

    • GreaterLesser

      Or Chrome Dev

  • AllPurposeRadio

    Is there a flag setting to turn off the colored address bar? At least for me that seems to cause a very noticeable slow down

  • Deividas Žilionis

    Can someone provide me the link to star wars picture as shown in one of the phones

  • saksham

    how does android make a phone so sluggish ? ive been using 2 pcs at my home one of which is 11 years old and i didnt upgrade any of its parts still it runs smooth and runs any basic application(i know they are 2 different OS but still)

    • Jack Leslie

      Because they run apps and manage ram almost as in opposit to each other. Ie the more apps in ram the faster those apps in ram will load. In Windows the more free ram the better. In android most people don’t know that all the pre installed junk can be disabled. Or that notifications can be disabled on junk games etc that use battery life or that apps can run in the background that have persistent notifications And can drain battery drastically in the background including causing slow downs. Not to mention very ineffient apps. The Facebook and messenger app for example when uninstalled on average speeds up app opening times by 2 or so seconds depending what app. When most apps take only 3 seconds at most to load that extra 2 seconds can add up and make your phone seem a lot more laggy. Not to mention. Phones have hundreds of apps installed, PCs most likely only have chrome, couple games and maybe antivirus plus a few extras depending on the user. And also unless you have current flagship phones 2015 and above they are no where near the performance of Even current low-mid range PCs or laptops in the past 3-5 years(ish).

  • Zach Chen

    RSBrowser ftw!

  • PromethianKnight

    One thing they can do is adblock support…. as viewing Android Authority on mobile chrome is a crawling and sluggish experience =P
    Using Samsung Stock Browser with Adblock Fast is the best internet browsing experience I’ve ever had on a phone =)

  • llf

    So, they say technology evolves and we are reading promises of artificial intelligence daily, why do we still need to use this “delete cache trick”, but the app can’t intelligently optimize it for us? Google should develop an OS letting uses to opt-in “OK, I trust your AI and security and stuff, I don’t care you profile me to which level, just give me the optimized UX.”

  • SirStephenH

    “The problem comes when you have too much cache data stored, as the files can get fragmented and corrupted, causing your browser to slow down.”

    Data fragmentation doesn’t matter on flash storage, such as what’s found in smartphones.

  • !n$!$!on*

    naked browser pro ftw… ur welcome

  • MathewSullivan

    “Keep chrome up to date”

    Wow…

    • Jonatan Gomez

      Yes, wow…

  • Karly Johnston

    Disable JavaScript… that’s funny. If i wanted to view the web that way I would use an old Blackberry.

  • Rohit Raja

    Pretty neat tricks….but it wont stop being Chrome though…..

  • Arnas

    Asus browser beta with adblock. Done. Download it from apk mirror.

  • Jonatan Gomez

    If you have an Android phone and you don’t know these things, you should probably get an iPhone.

  • ekngee

    use an ad-blocking app, like AdAway (root) or NetGuard (non-root)