Applications in the background
The hunt for background applications has begun.
But before we start with the massacre let’s remember that many of the applications run in the background for a good reason: they are synchronizing data, providing location or any other action for which they were designed.
If you want to know which are the applications that occupy background resources and finish with them, we show you next.
Process statistics and battery usage
First, if you want to know what applications are running in the background, how many resources are consuming, processing power and impact on the battery.
Android monitors everything that applications are using and the processes that are running in the background.
To be able to see all this information we must do the following steps:
- Activate the developer options in Settings > Phone Information and click on the build number several times in a row until you get a small notification that the developer options are active.
- Now we have a new menu under Settings > Developer Options > Services running. In this section we can see how long the applications have been running and selecting them shows us how much RAM they are using.
- In Settings > Battery we can see the processes and applications that consume more batteries.
What background applications can I stop?
The biggest culprits for RAM usage and background battery consumption are games and music players you’re not using.
These applications need to store a lot of information in the RAM memory with the consequent expenditure of energy. If you don’t have a good reason why to keep these types of applications in the background, it’s best to close them.
You should usually leave Google applications or services in the background. These are the applications you should NOT stop:
- Google Account Manager
- Google Play services
- Google Contacts Sync
- Google Play Store
In the list of Process Statistics you can find good clues about which applications to leave in the background, when you click on any application it shows you how often you use it, surely WhatsApp is among the first.
This list is also a good place to stop applications pre-installed by the manufacturer or services you probably don’t use like Google Play Music.
How to disable, stop and uninstall applications in the background
If you have a suspicious application, which makes excessive use of resources and battery, or its background process is much more active than it should be, then you may need to take some of these steps:
- Forcing arrest. Go to Settings > Applications, select the application and click on Force Stop. You can also go directly to the application information by clicking on its icon and dropping it above where it says Application Information.
- From multitasking you can also stop the application by simply sliding its window to one side. To enter multitasking just press the square button on the navigation bar. Up to KitKat or later the button has a look that depends a little on the manufacturer but is usually also next to the start button and has a symbol with squares. In other devices, multitasking is accessed by pressing the start button for a long time, for example.
- Deactivate an application. For applications that come pre-installed but you don’t use. Go to the application information and in the top right click on Disable.
- Uninstall the application. Under Settings > Applications, select the application you want and click Uninstall.
Remember that if you have no idea what the application is or what it does, you will most likely have to leave it as it is and not stop it, unless it is using a lot of resources or has presented a problem.
Limit background applications to a specific number
From the developer options we can limit the exact number of applications that remain running in the background.
Once the developer options are enabled, enter them, scroll down to the bottom and tap Limit background processes.
Here you can choose how many applications you want to leave running in the background: 0, 1, 2, 3 or 4. When you open an application it will push the first one that was open limiting its execution but it will not come out of multitasking.
Greenify is an application that puts others into hibernation when you’re not using them. It is basically an automated version of the forced shutdown of applications every time you stop using them.
Normally doing it manually is a bit cumbersome and Greenify helps us without realizing it in this tedious task.
Greenify is getting more and more powerful and you don’t need to be root to get all the juice out of it.
If you have a rotated device you will be able to use a few more options but standard operation is available to all users. In the latest updates you have options to make Doze more aggressive and Doze on the go.