Your phone is slowing down, but it’s also your fault
One of the most common complaints people have about phones is that they slow down over time. At first it’s snappy and fast, but six months later it feels sluggish. There are a few things to blame here, including you.
Why Do Phones Get Slower Over Time?
Let’s talk about why phones – both Android devices and iPhones – and other gadgets tend to slow down as they get older. There are several things that contribute to this and some of them are completely out of your control.
First of all, the software on your phone literally changes. It came with a specific version of Android or iOS that was optimized for the device. The software updates that the device receives may not be optimized as nicely. Updates can also add new apps and other things that take up more space.
Software updates aren’t just about the operating system either. The apps and games on your device are also constantly updated. Sometimes developers target newer devices with hardware and features you don’t have. The apps get more complex and don’t work as well on older devices.
If you own an iPhone, it can even be delayed on purpose. In 2017, Apple confirmed that it has intentionally slowed down some older iPhones to extend the life of the devices. Essentially, it slowed down performance to let the batteries age more slowly.
The moral of the story here is that software becomes less optimized for your device over time. Software that is not optimized for the hardware will not work as well. That’s not the whole story, however.
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It’s your fault too
People generally assume that their phone is slowing down simply because it’s getting old and that’s exactly what happens. Well, as explained above, that is partially true. But it also helps you in that process.
Think about what your phone looked like on the first day. You turned it on for the first time, signed in and found a handful of apps already installed. Then you started downloading your favorite apps and games. You may also have downloaded some backup photos and videos.
You immediately fill the device with a lot of new things. And from that day on, your list of apps will only grow with time. In addition, you take more photos and videos, download more files and the browser collects data.
It’s a bit like moving into a new house. Initially, you bring your essentials with you. Over time, you fill the space with more things. It takes longer to scroll through your apps, more notifications come in, it’s harder to find things in the file manager, and some apps that weren’t there on day one are using resources in the background.
Not only does the device slow down on a technical level, but it also practically takes longer before you can just move around. We are constantly asking our devices to do more and more and add things that get in our way. You can’t just blame your phone.
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How to make an old phone fast again
Is it possible to counter all these things that slow down your phone? Fortunately, yes, it is. There are a number of things you can do to improve your phone’s performance.
First, uninstall apps you don’t use. These apps may not seem to hurt anything, but they take up storage space and can occasionally do things in the background. It’s a good idea to check the apps and games on your device from time to time.
Second, clean up the files on your phone. The Downloads and Screenshots folders in particular can become full of files you no longer need. If you back up photos and videos to a cloud storage service, you can also delete the local files on your device.
If all else fails, you can do a factory reset and start from scratch. This will remove everything and make the phone feel like it did the day you bought it. You can’t stop gadgets from slowing down, but you can turn back the clock every now and then.
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