Old Android phones are all over. They remain in closets, cooking areas, desk drawers– and, yes, even in the pockets of efficient company individuals who (gasp!) have not troubled to update in a while.
In spite of the consistent marketing to the contrary, mobile phones can stay completely capable long after their launch dates. They can, nevertheless, begin to appear a little sluggish or behind the curve after a couple of years of usage– and the older and more resource-limited a gadget is, the more noticable that impact is most likely to be.
However wait! Do not desert hope right now: A handful of easy actions can make your old Android phone feel brand-new (or a minimum of brand-new er) once again. And whether you’re still bring the gadget around as a day-to-day chauffeur or utilizing it for more imaginative functions, every little enhancement counts.
So summon your inner mechanic and prepare yourself: It’s time to consider that old Android phone a much-needed tune-up– and a fresh lease on life.
Action 1: Tidy up your storage
First things initially: Let’s have a look at that regional storage. Great deals of phones have actually restricted regional area, and cleaning out the mess can go a long method in making things run much better.
The simplest method to obtain your home in order is with a one-two punch: First, open Google Photos (or if your phone is old enough that it didn’t included Pictures preinstalled, go download it from the Play Store and then open it).
Tap the menu icon in the app’s upper-left corner, select “Settings,” then select “Back up & sync” and activate the toggle that appears. (If the toggle was already activated when you got there, congrats! Take a victory sip of the nearest beverage and jump ahead to the next paragraph.) Follow the steps to set up syncing and then wait while Photos backs up your entire image and video collection to the cloud.
Got it? Good. Next, grab Google’s free Files Go app and open it up. Once you grant the app permission to access your phone’s storage, it’ll show you a series of suggestions for freeing up space on your device. Look in particular for cards directing you to remove junk files, duplicate files, downloaded files, large files, and now-redundant copies of your cloud-synced photos and videos.
Follow the steps on each of those, and take a deep breath: We’re ready to move on.
Step 2: Get rid of unused apps
The second step in our phone rehabilitation process is saying so long to apps you no longer need. Such items eat up space on your local storage (remember step 1?) and also have the potential to slow down your device by running in the background and using up resources.
The Files Go app we just installed is an excellent starting point for figuring out what to eliminate. On its main screen, you should see a card labeled “Unused apps” that lists every program you haven’t opened in at least four weeks. Tap it and scan through the list. In my experience, it sometimes gets things wrong — for instance, it might include a keyboard app that you haven’t technically “opened” (as in, touched the icon in your app drawer) but most certainly have used — but if nothing else, it’ll get you thinking about what you do and don’t actually need.
With that knowledge in mind, mosey over to the “Apps” section of your system settings, look for the command to view all of your installed apps, and look carefully through the complete list. With each app, ask yourself: Have I even thought about this within the last few months? If not, then you probably don’t need it. Tap it, then tap the “Uninstall” button — and move on with your life.
If an app came preinstalled on your phone and can’t be uninstalled, look for the button to disable it instead. (Use common sense with this, of course, and don’t disable anything that appears to be a system-level utility. Apps such as Carrier Services, Exchange Services, Google Play Services, and SIM Toolkit are prime examples of things you shouldn’t attempt to disable.)
Aside from freeing up space and stopping unnecessary resource use, you might just find that clearing out your app clutter makes you more efficient.
Step 3: Consider lightweight app alternatives
Unused apps aren’t the only source of smartphone slowdown; apps you use regularly could also be commanding more than their share of system resources and causing your device to stutter.
The most notorious culprit is Facebook. I can’t tell you how many people I hear from who uninstall the Facebook app and then suddenly notice their phone running faster.
If you absolutely need to have Facebook on your phone, consider switching to the “Lite” versions of both the main app and the Messenger function. They’ll use less horsepower while still giving you access to the same basic stuff.
Other apps, such as Google Maps and Skype, offer similar lightweight options. Twitter, meanwhile, pushes resource-conscious users to its mobile website, which is meaningfully less puffed up than its standalone app.
Action 4: Secure down on background information abusers
Great deals of completely legitimate apps– social networks and news energies, for example– are established by default to carry out regular background check-ins throughout the day. Usually, such activity is hugely unneeded, because you most likely just require the service’s stream of information to revitalize when you’re actively taking a look at it.
Follow the very first 2 actions in my Android data-saving overview of discover and deal with the data-guzzling outlaws on your gadget. The decrease of background activity ought to assist your having a hard time phone run much faster– and as a benefit, it may make your regular monthly service expense a bit lower, too.
Step 5: Ensure all your apps depend on date
This next part’s simple: Now that we have actually got your app collection tidied up and lost weight, open the Play Shop on your phone, tap the three-line menu icon in its upper-right corner, and choose “My apps & & video games.” While linked to Wi-Fi, tap the button to upgrade all your staying apps that have more recent variations offered.
Old variations of apps can be buggy and less enhanced than their current equivalents. To make sure you constantly remain present from here on out, search in the Play Shop’s settings for a line identified “Auto-update apps” and verify that it’s set to upgrade all apps instantly over Wi-Fi.
Action 6: Beautify– and accelerate– your house screen
Your house screen is the heart of your mobile phone experience, and on aging gadgets in specific, it might be holding you back– both in regards to speed and in regards to its dated-feeling nature.
A third-party launcher can refresh things up on both fronts, without any genuine disadvantages included– and you have actually got no scarcity of good choices. The complimentary Lawnchair Launcher is a great location to begin; it provides you a tidy, easy, and rapid house screen environment designed off of Google’s Pixel Launcher setup (though with much more functions and chances for personalization).
If you desire a lot more power and control, Action Launcher (complimentary with optional $5 in-app upgrade for innovative functions) and Nova Launcher (complimentary with optional $5 add-on for innovative functions) will provide you loads of fascinating brand-new tools that’ll make your phone seem like a more present design.
Action 7: Downsize system animations
Animations in software application sure can be quite. They can make a mobile os feel refined, cohesive, and total. They can likewise, nevertheless, make a phone feel poky– especially when stated gadget has actually seen much better days.
Not to fear, though: Android has a concealed method for you to make those animations less noticeable. Open your system settings, tap “System,” and after that tap “About phone.” (On some gadgets, the “About phone” choice might be best in the primary system settings menu.)
Scroll down till you see a line identified “Construct number,” and– ridiculous as it might sound– tap that line 7 times. Strike the Back button, and you ought to see a brand-new area identified “Designer choices.”
Let me be clear: This is a really innovative area of Android’s settings and is not something a typical user ought to usually mess around with. Unless you wish to run the risk of actually messing things up, change just the particular locations pointed out here and leave whatever else alone. Capisce?
Now, scroll down till you see an area identified “Illustration.” There, you ought to discover 3 animation-related settings: “Window animation scale,” “Shift animation scale,” and “Animator period scale.” Tap each of those and alter its worth to “Animation scale.5 x” (and make certain you’re picking “.5 x”– with a decimal).
Head back to your house screen and after that attempt moving your phone– opening the app drawer, opening an app and after that going back to the house screen, and so on. Things ought to appear visibly more zippy.
If you believe there’s space for more enhancement, you can attempt heading back to that very same menu and altering those settings to “Animation off.” It’s a more severe dive– and for many people, the “.5 x” setting will be the optimum happy medium– however if your phone is seriously delayed, it’s an alternative worth checking out.
Action 8: Carry out a factory reset
If your reliable old phone is still sensation slow after all these actions, there’s one last thing to attempt: cleaning it tidy and beginning over from scratch. A factory reset cleans out all the cobwebs and generally makes a phone run much faster, a minimum of for a while.
Make certain to verify that your essential information and settings are supported correctly, then search for the choice to carry out a complete factory reset within your system settings (most likely inside the “System” area). Let the phone finish the procedure, then check in and set things back up the method you like.
Think about reperforming actions 6 and 7, too; even post-reset, they’ll matter.
Action 9: Include some helpful brand-new functions
Finally, do not let an absence of love from your phone’s maker keep you down. Android has a lot of innovative apps that can enhance your phone’s user interface and make it much easier to utilize.
Have a look at my list of efficiency-enhancing Android apps and provide yourself a much-needed upgrade on your own terms– then relax, unwind, and indulge in the delight of your new-feeling old phone.