Andriod apps could be twice as power efficent without ads

Free apps that cycle through ads are killing battery life on mobile devices, according to a group of Purdue University researchers. Photo credit:

If you’ve got an Android phone or tablet, it would get dramatically better battery life without advertisements, according to an article on tech website The Verge.

A team of researchers at Purdue University recently partnered up with Microsoft, and they discovered that a whopping 75 percent of app related battery drainage on the Android platform is due to the processes that show ads.

It’s well-known that free apps on all mobile platforms – like iOS and Android – that show ads tend to be huge battery hogs, but this is one of the first studies I’ve heard of that shows just how much juice those advertisements take out of a battery.

Lead by Purdue doctoral candidate Abhinav Pathak, the researchers developed a really cool piece of software called EProf, which is able to evaluate just how much an individual app is draining the battery.

The group tested five popular free apps on an HTC Passion (Nexus One) running Android 2.3.

Examples of the apps they tested are: Angry Birds, Free Chess, and the New York Times app.

When Angry Birds was tested, they found that less than 30 percent of the battery drainage was caused by actual game play.


After I read that, it made me wonder, where is the other 70 percent of the battery drainage coming from?

The researchers found that it comes from:

  • uploading information about the user (physical location, for example)
  • downloading advertisements
  • displaying those advertisements

A word of advice that can be taken from all this information:

Avoid free apps that contain ads.

Paying a few dollars for the app will help save battery life immensely.



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