Anyone who owns a smartphone, after about a year or so, might have the feeling that it is much slower than when they bought it.
While sometimes it’s just a perception, most of the time this feeling is true, and really the phone has become slower than before.
While in another article we have seen why the PC is getting slower and slower talking about real causes, on this occasion we see why a smartphone, even the best in the world, seems to become slower and slower with time, in executing commands, applications and normal operations.
In this article we see how to speed up the slow phone and what are the causes of decelerations and performance losses after a certain period of use, which are not solved with a simple restart.
1) Your phone may become slower as a result of system updates
If you had bought a phone with a certain operating system, surely that device had been tested and designed to have the best possible performance with that version of the system (e. g. Android 5 or iOS 8).
If the system has received new updates, they should theoretically have been tested by the manufacturer, but it is not necessarily the same performance.
While on PCs this is a more negligible factor (for example, Windows 10 is less heavy than Windows 8.1), updates to the operating systems of leading mobile phones, i. e. Android and iOS, are taking up more space and activating new features.
However, there is not much to do about this factor to avoid the problem, also because system updates must always be installed mainly for security reasons.
2) Application updates may slow down your phone
Apps that remain in the background on both Android and iPhone are the main causes of slowdowns.
In some cases, then, especially when talking about social networking and chat apps, updates bring new features and, consequently, more memory consumption.
Just think how much the Facebook app has changed over the years, becoming bigger and heavier enough to be no longer sustainable on older phones.
The problem is that app developers aren’t very sensitive to those who use cheaper or older phones, so with the release of increasingly powerful smartphones, apps are updated without looking too much at how many resources they use.
Apps such as Tinder, Spotify, Snapchat or Google are also getting bigger and bigger and making phones increasingly slower.
The solution in this case is to use lighter versions of apps such as Facebook Lite and Messenger Lite and to use websites instead of applications when possible.
3) Background applications
As mentioned above, the main reason why a phone seems to be slower is because of applications in the background, i. e. those that are not seen but are active.
To begin with, closing apps in the background on iOS and Android is useless and does not need to be done as explained in another article.
In the guides on how to speed up the iPhone and how to manage the active apps on Android, we explained how to control which apps are in the background and how to limit them so that they don’t use CPUs and RAM memory as well as battery charge.
4) Too much space occupied in the internal memory.
All smartphones and tablets have flash memory called NAND.
While NAND is fast and convenient, its performance is negatively affected by the amount of memory occupied and the reduction in free space.
The exact mechanism of this dynamics are beyond the scope of this article, here you just have to say that NAND memory needs a certain amount of “empty blocks” to achieve maximum data writing performance.
In addition, the NAND memory degrades with use and time.
If there is little to do due to the deterioration caused by time and use, at least 75% of the space must be kept free to optimize flash memory speed.
So if your mobile phone has 16GB memory, ideally you should keep 4GB of free space.
Note that on Samsung smartphones there is a cheaper type of NAND memory that degrades much faster (4,000 cell writing cycles versus 10,000 standard type).
5) A phone is perceived to be slower even if it is not really slower.
If iPhone 7 comes out, the iPhone 6 seems slower than before, and this psychological discourse applies to almost everything in technology
A device may seem slower only because it feels slower, not because it actually slows down.
Usually this type of sensation occurs after an operating system update or after a new model of the same is released