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Stop killing your Android phone! There’s a lot of misinformation out there regarding the usefulness of RAM booster apps and task killer apps. At first glance they sound incredibly useful, but a closer look shows that they could actually be harming your phone instead.

Long story short: Simply avoid using RAM booster and task killer apps. They may have once been useful, but Android has progressed far enough that these sorts of apps are now outdated, unnecessary, and counterproductive. If you want to know why they’re bad, keep reading.

How Android Handles RAM and Apps


To understand how Android handles RAM, we first need to understand what RAM is RAM For Gamers: What Do The Specs Mean And How Do They Alter Performance RAM For Gamers: What Do The Specs Mean And How Do They Alter Performance If you want to experience great performance while playing games, it's important that you use the right hardware that can do the job. Read More and how it works.

There’s a lot of technobabble that could be said about it, but for our purposes, it’s enough to know that RAM means random access memory and it’s a type of storage that’s incredibly fast but disappears when the device shuts down. Therefore, RAM is useful for holding temporary information that changes a lot and gets frequently accessed.

On Windows, you want to keep as much RAM available 5 Ways to Clear Memory & Increase RAM on Your Windows Computer 5 Ways to Clear Memory & Increase RAM on Your Windows Computer RAM, the final frontier. You always seem to run out of it. We'll show you how you can free up internal memory and extend your RAM, both virtually and physically. Read More as you can so that programs have enough room to operate. When RAM fills up, Windows is forced to start using hard drive space as virtual RAM and hard drives are much slower than physical RAM.

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This is not true for Android.

Android’s operating system has its own native handler for assigning RAM to apps and making sure that all of it is being used in the most optimal way. In fact, Android purposely tries to keep apps loaded into RAM for better performance. RAM is fast, remember? On mobile devices, every bit of speed is critical for a good user experience, so keeping apps in RAM is actually a good thing.

If you use a lot of different apps, you may want to consider a model with more RAM the next time you buy a smartphone Buying A New Smartphone? How To Understand The Hardware Specs Buying A New Smartphone? How To Understand The Hardware Specs There was once a time when buying a cell phone was like buying a CD player. Over time, however, phones have become miniature computers – and the specifications are nearly as complex as a PC's. Read More .

Not only does Android handle RAM assignment, but it also keeps track of background apps so they don’t use up unnecessary processor resources. There’s no noticeable performance hit for leaving apps loaded in RAM. There’s one exception to this, but we’ll cover that in the last section of this article.

The Deceit of RAM Boosters & Task Killers


At this point, it might seem like RAM boosters and task killers are neutral. They might not necessarily help with Android performance, but they aren’t bad to have around, right? Maybe they provide some marginal benefits? Unfortunately, no. They are detrimental.

Typical Windows wisdom says to kill RAM-hogging processes and defragment your hard drive for faster speeds. This is good in the context of Windows, but applying it to Android results in negative gain.

For one, Android uses an SD card for file storage rather than a traditional hard drive. SD cards are a type of flash memory — similar to solid state drives How Do Solid-State Drives Work? [MakeUseOf Explains] How Do Solid-State Drives Work? [MakeUseOf Explains] Over the past few decades, there has been a considerable amount of work in the field of computer hardware. While computer technology is constantly improving and evolving, rarely do we experience moments where we simply... Read More  — and don’t need to be defragmented. In fact, one of the downsides to flash memory is a limited number of times that data can be written to the card before it expires. By defragmenting an SD card, you can decrease its lifespan.

When you clear apps from RAM, Android is just going to load them into RAM again the next time it needs to access those apps (for notifications, updates, and other background details). This is actually slower for you since SD cards are slower than RAM.

And in the case of automatic task killers, you end up having to sacrifice some of your RAM and CPU to the task killer app itself, which is always running and monitoring for opportunities when tasks should be killed. This can be a big drain on battery life — and you aren’t getting anything useful in return!

Improving Android Performance & Battery Life


If you’re using a task killer, it’s likely the case that you just aren’t happy about your device’s performance. It’s slow, perhaps even sluggish, and using it is more of a nuisance than a joy. If a task killer isn’t going to help, what can you do to boost Android performance?

Kill misbehaving apps. You should avoid killing apps just to free up RAM, but always be on the lookout for apps that use an unusual amount of CPU. These can seriously slow down performance and kill battery life. Watchdog Task Manager is a great app for this.

Use lightweight apps. Many times, poor performance can be attributed to a particular app rather than the Android device itself. For frequently used apps (e.g., browsers, notebooks, music players, etc.) always go for the ones that are most lightweight and battery friendly.

Toggle unnecessary features. It’s convenient to keep your data on all of the time, but it’s going to have an impact on performance. The same goes for always keeping your WiFi, Bluetooth, and GPS on. Toggle them off when you aren’t using them to preserve resources. Use a toggle widget Switch On, Switch Off: Top Toggle Widgets For Android Switch On, Switch Off: Top Toggle Widgets For Android Ask any Android enthusiast about why they love the operating system and they’re likely to reply “Widgets!” These homescreen mini-apps can display all sorts of information. They also allow users quick access to core system... Read More to make it even easier to handle.

Install a custom ROM. This tip is a bit more advanced and should only be considered by those who are familiar with Android troubleshooting. Installing a custom ROM How To Find & Install a Custom ROM For Your Android Device How To Find & Install a Custom ROM For Your Android Device One of the great things about Android is that the operating system isn't stuck on just one device - you can find it on all sorts of gadgets from multiple manufacturers. Another beautiful feature about... Read More is like installing a different distribution of Linux: some ROMs are faster and less battery intensive, which is great for weaker devices.

For more tips, check out Guy’s roundup of nine ways to extend Android battery life 9 Proven, Tested Tips To Extend Your Android's Battery Life 9 Proven, Tested Tips To Extend Your Android's Battery Life No matter how long your phone's battery life lasts, there are ways that you can definitely make it last longer. Let's take a look at some different ways. Read More .

What are your experiences with task killer apps? Do you use one for your Android right now? Have they been helpful or have they just been placebo? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

Image Credits: Phone Apps Via Shutterstock, Phone Circuitry Via Shutterstock, Charging Battery Via Shutterstock

  1. Annita Stratton
    August 20, 2016 at 7:17 am

    I didnt have a problem before and sprint says all the other clean apps are viruses plus when i turn off my phone is cools off and i was told its the screen light that makes it over heat.

  2. Michelle
    August 12, 2016 at 12:26 pm

    Have tried many task,booster,cleaners whatever. Yes I thought they were just sheer magic,at first. Always seemed to drain battery more which obviously odd with an app claiming to extend!!
    Thank you. You have once and for all answered that perplexing doubt ive always had"!!!

  3. MECV
    June 8, 2016 at 1:41 am

    Thank you, thank you, thank you...

    have had Clean Master for I don't know how long on my old Galaxy S4. I was planning on formatting/resorting to factory or buying a new phone because of all the problems, getting hot, poor battery life, lack of performance, very slow...

    Uninstalled clean master, now, it's back the way it should be. My S4 is rooted and I had the automatic killer on.

  4. Dharmveer singh
    May 11, 2016 at 1:24 pm

    Dear Yeroc,
    for your kind info. clean master using a lot of RAM then other apps & slowing down your interface...
    try installing a light ram cleaning app& compare ram usage with clean master and after uninstalling clean master!
    You will notice a hug difference in your ram usage(about 10-15%)

  5. Yeroc
    May 5, 2016 at 3:35 pm

    I have to disagree. I have been using Clean Master for years now with low-end to mid-range devices. If didn't, my phone would be bogged down by cache data that is stored in the memory by apps like chrome, YouTube, and Facebook. just those three can cache over 500MB combined with just a few hours of use. Clean Master scans and rids me of the junk cache, drastically speeding up my device.

  6. Denden
    March 16, 2016 at 5:48 am

    how to fix my phone my phone is damage i think it is bootloof

  7. Dirk
    February 9, 2016 at 12:14 pm

    After an upgrade of Android (I do not remember which one) my Nexus 7 (2012) was slower. I installed Clean Master Phone Boost and it seemed to work well. But gradually I had to clean the Nexus 7 more often, e.g. each time before I could use Google Chrome!
    Now I uninstalled Clean Master and the Nexus has regained its former speed. The later upgrades of Android will have done their job too, but I suppose Clean Master concealed the improvement. No need to buy a new tablet, although I already made my choice. Thanks for this article!

  8. Carlos Pantera
    January 25, 2016 at 11:03 am if we don't need to use a ram sweeper or cleaner or whatever how can I for example change using from multitasking (using normal apps) to a heavy game like fifa 15 without cleaning the memory first? So I'll start the app with my ram full of unusefull shit that I was doing low end devices with less than 1 Gb of ram that must be beautiful... OK task killers and ram Optimizers can be bad if for example you are using more than one cause the app himself drains battery and occupy resources that's true so just choose wisely the one you will use...I'm a programmer for 25 years...and android or Linux or what you wanna call it may vary in certain points on witch I'm usted to, but the principles that matters are basicly the same... this article is certainty not accurate at all.

  9. KathyA
    January 11, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    I was getting frustrated with my Note 4 getting really slow, so today I uninstalled Clean Master and the phone has speeded up considerably! I'm going to see what other task killers I have loaded on the phone and get rid of them as well and see what happens!

  10. Greg
    December 24, 2015 at 1:39 pm

    What do you think about avast cleaner pro? i thought it wasn't that good because it doesn't clean a lot of MB whereas other programs that include RAM clean 500MB etc. If it just cleans stuff without messing with the RAM is it safe?

  11. Shane Smiskol
    November 1, 2015 at 5:04 pm

    This article is false for me. With Lollipop's terrible memory leak problem which gets so bad, switching home screen pages takes 10 seconds, you NEED to use battery savers that auto-hibernate and kill apps.

  12. Andy A (Proven Web)
    October 6, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    There's a contradiction in this article.

    It states that you shouldn't use task killers because using up RAM doesn't really matter, but then goes on to recommend Watchdog Task Manager and suggests you avoid heavy, battery draining apps!

    People don't care if it's RAM or CPU they need to be careful about. They just want to keep their device clean and extend the battery as long as possible. That's why they use task killers (of which Watchdog Task Manager is one). If you use a task killer that stops the background apps that you don't really need, then you will be reducing the load on your CPU, reducing the drain on your battery and therefore getting a benefit from the task killer.

    • Joel Lee
      October 7, 2015 at 12:55 pm

      Hey Andy. We think task killers are fine as long as they aren't automated. Automated task killers are the real battery hogs. If an app only cleans tasks when you tell it to, then it should be fine.

    • Gauranga Mahaprabhu
      October 31, 2015 at 8:40 am

      Hey Andy, there's no contradiction in this article. Watchdog is pretty different from regular Task killers. As its name suggest, Watchdog is just to watch apps running at background. Its not for killing those apps, unlike task killers. It just helps us to detect misbehaving apps, which we can force stop instead of killing like task killers.
      & this method actually saves a battery from draining.

      Task killers may kill apps running at background but soon they get restarted again & this cycle goes on & that really drain your battery more as merely running background apps don't affect memory or drain battery.

      So when you say you kill apps to free up RAM to reduce load on CPU & battery, apps get reloaded within moments as per Android memory management. So better identify apps & force close them.

  13. Bobbi Jones
    August 29, 2015 at 11:09 pm

    I had a gut feeling that this was the case, so I googled it and there was you were! Women's intuition ;)
    Thanks for the informative well written article.

  14. Kavutham K
    July 20, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Hello Friends,

    I am K.Kavutham from India. I am using Android Mobile with some Apps like Battery Doctor, C Cleaner, Clean Master etc. I don't want to lose my mobile charge in a quicker way and also to slow down the performance of my mobile. Inorder to boost my mobile i am using the Battery doctor and Clean Master Apps. whether it is correct or wrong to use those Apps on my mobile?? Will they harm my mobile?? And give me an idea to use my Android mobile effectively and efficiently.. Do i need to Uninstall those Apps from my mobile or not?? Give the Better conclusion for me...

  15. Scott Ivlow
    June 24, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    Yesterday I came across this article regarding another article from Lifehacker about the Task Killer app. I had the DU Speed Booster app on my LG Vista smartphone with KitKat. Every time I used this app it shortened my batter life from over 20 hours with a brand new battery to over 17 hours in less than a month. I uninstalled this app yesterday and installed the watchdog app. I did keep my DU battery app. It has an optimizer that will kill running apps so I have to be cautious of when I use it because it as far I know will also shorten battery life.
    Yesterday for the first time I installed an android black wall paper. This will also save battery life. Previously I was using Bing images. Also I do charge my phone at least twice a day. I do need to install a micro SD card today. To restrict my phone from burning data I have used the settings that restrict apps that use back ground data except on apps that I run all the time for updates like email, social networks, and news sites. I turn off data when using Wi-Fi.

  16. Xsizor blaze
    June 7, 2015 at 12:58 pm

    i really agree to your post...i have thought multiple times of the fact that these app killers using RAM itself....but how to help it....i dumped my new samsung just because it went sluggish and system problems started to jump in ....the fact is i am someone who dislikes much social stuff and rely more on my smartphone for everything from reading files to playing games...AND it takes up phone went crazy as i said before, after trying to use certain apps to increase ram by allocating space on card memory for it...the phone developed a syndrome of sorts.....even restarting abruptly while on calls and stuff....i took Htc praying it has the quality it boasted off....But even now i smell RAM problem even after doing things like uninstalling apps and clearing cache myself....The fact is i would really go for a phone with 3 - 4 GB RAM even if it meant going outside my budget (i opt for phones of medium range)....Xiaomi MI 4 was that phone i looked for....but htc is fine...i am waiting for Xiaomi MI 5....Why dont manf care much for RAM ?

  17. taia_farshid
    May 31, 2015 at 11:19 am

    Let's go back in time, windows 95 and 98 era! Antiviruses had no sell at all, then Chernobyl virus came to scene! Then "I love you" and after those viruses, having an antivirus became a norm! And they claim that more than a thousand of viruses are detected by them daily!! Just to force users buy their products! Now let's come back to 2015! Those companies found a new way of selling their products (sell doesn't necessarily mean ask you for money)! They convince you that your phone has junk files! That your memory needs to be free! That you need to boost your cpu to run games! That your battery is draining because apps are runing! And so on! But in reality have you ever asked yourself that what junk files are?!! Why you need most of your RAM to be free?! Why your battery is draining?! There are no junk files, junk files are either files that you downloaded using apps, or are gallery thumbnails or other system related files! Free RAM, is like having a Lamborghini in a small village with lots of bumps. You have RAM to let your OS use it to run smoother! If you check similar phonse with different RAM amount are not using the same amount of RAM because your OS will try to run as much as app in ram to boost your phone. And RAM is not what drains battery! That is CPU usage. So Instead of downloading useless apps and granting them lots of permissions, just use your phone in peace :)

  18. Dennis G.
    May 22, 2015 at 9:51 am

    Hi Joel. I commend you for this article. Informative, well-written and a superior layout. It was truly a pleasure reading it.

  19. Haggai
    May 14, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    True but not accurate...
    first- sometimes we need to have some apps, but don't want them to be there all the time- It occationally happand to me that an app decided to check my location all the time and consumed 30% of the battery through its access to the GPS. This is only one example while using android 4.
    moreover- app killers allow you to choose which apps are not to be touched. This partially pulls the air out of your second balloon...
    and, even with android 4, and for the few of us not always taking the best android phone off the shelf- some of us have less than 1G ram and we need it!

    so- good article, made me think, but I'm not convinced.
    Thank you anyway for the explanations,

  20. SD
    May 14, 2015 at 5:39 am

    So which one should we use?? Greenify or Clean master????

    Read somewhere that using clean master wakes up the disabled and stopped apps and these run in the background draining battery...... so grrenify is the best ????
    Should i uninstall clean master???? or should i keep it for removing junk and antivirus????

  21. dtanders
    May 6, 2015 at 9:21 pm

    I just wish Android wasn't so astoundingly bad at figuring out what to keep cached. I can see apps I haven't used in months sitting there cached in memory but the ones I use daily? Nope - those get cleared out of the cache within hours, usually. Probably to free up cache space :

  22. Brad
    April 28, 2015 at 8:00 pm

    I find that all the task killers I use remove the programs only to have them reload again. For some reason my game works better the more ram I can free. Age of Waring Empires is bit of a memory hog. Is there any way to keep programs I never use from loading or I have not installed. SAMSUNG Note 3.

  23. Fred J
    April 26, 2015 at 12:36 am

    Man... this guy again.... Just a quick one... battery life is affected by any app but especially those using you device to send and receive... especially phone. The transmitter is the biggest battery draw next to the screen and in some cases even then. Make sure you set your device to update only on wifi and including google play. AGAIN... removing those apps which contantly report and check online when you are not running them...... OK Install any App/Process manager that lets you watch which app is running... kill them all then watch and see which ones restart... do this several times.. Remeber those apps installed by the device maker can not be uninstalled without rooting... ignor these unless you are rooted... if you use the app often.. leave it and allow your app/process killer to manage it..... if you use if only occassionally.. back it up and/or uninstall it.. if you never use it.. get rid of it... clean you system before you yell about a manager draining your battery.... apps not using your screen or transmitting are REALLY NOT DRAINING THELIFE FROM YOUR BATTERY... it's the ones that are. ok enough.. last cheers... FJM

  24. Fred J
    April 26, 2015 at 12:26 am

    FYI sorry for spelling errors - just giant fingers with small key Errors..... But I am sure some Stupid Lame Moron who feels good about correction others will comment... especially if they did not like what I posted... Cheers again and hope you get your systems up and running smoothly.. FJM

  25. Fred J
    April 26, 2015 at 12:23 am

    Does the name IDIOT spring to mind with these TECHS??? Androids biggest problem is that Android allows apps to control there own start up instead of the user... Any given moment 6 to 12 apps are running in the background. Not apps that have a reason like a memorory manager but most likely that photo app you you use once a month, or that game you played two weeks ago... why? Simple, to exploit the market from Apple, Android allowed Marketing through the apps... these apps are not free... Not even the ownes with no ads appearing... For any "Tech" to claim that these apps are managed by Android adiquitly or that a good App Killer does not speed up your system...... they are IDIOTS..... Android needs a market change to control Apps... a system allowing users to choose which apps are allowed access and better infor on when apps you install are allowed to gain access to your system.... It is only a matter of time before useres get tired of slow downs from installing apps they want to havve but do not use frequently slowing their systems...... Here is the Best solution.... Install only what you are using.... Uninstall those apps you rarely use and install them when you need them... perhaps using an archive app (18 in 1 Android Assistance does this) the fewer apps in your devide... the faster it will run... that simple... a good memory cleaner (again 18 in 1 - or any other one this is not an ad just what I use) and Process/App killer (sigh need I say it again)... set them to clean as oftern as they can.... IGNOR techs that get there info from online articles or onez that use $1000 phones and devices and have the speed and memory not to notice whzat the rest of us use... Cheers

  26. mark loveless
    April 22, 2015 at 12:10 am

    What if your phone doesn't use SD cards.. How does ram managers effect the phone

  27. Joina
    April 11, 2015 at 6:24 am

    Yaah task killers , i even wonder myself "why should i need them yet my battery is already damaged?" i have been using them for a long period but 'the battery has become worser than before.' I now see the reason of buying a smartphone with a relatively bigger RAM.

  28. Travis
    April 6, 2015 at 5:17 am

    Greetings to you all. I have to say that all the articles/threads posted all have some merit in one way or another. Before I get carried away I have to say that each and every article read was superb, thank you very much indeed.

    I have found that the more I fiddle around with my device trying to "tweak" it, that's when various problems start popping up.

    After having done a factory reset on my Sony Xperia Z, and not been anywhere close to any app that resembles a "tweak" anything, my device is running beautifully. So, dear guys and gal, in my opinion, if it ain't broke, leave it alone.

    Which reminds me...I had better factory reset again quickly...all good,just having a laugh ????
    Blessings to You all from Cape Town, South Africa!

  29. shiru
    April 5, 2015 at 5:10 am

    Will the usage of greenify be helpful?
    Am hibernating the apps so that it won't run in d background. Say for example, am adding whatsapp to the hibernate list, so even if I turn on my internet, in d background data transfer won't happen for whatsapp unless I open it. Will this be helpful for other batteryconsuming apps or will it impact the performance?

  30. Alex
    March 29, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    Booster apps usually clean trash files too how am i going to clean all this trash without them?

  31. John
    March 22, 2015 at 9:29 pm

    I just uninstalled Task Killer and Clean Master and immediately saw improvement, beforehand It was just as you described painfully aggravating using phone. No more of these for me. And I literally read your article within 30 seconds of doing a Google search on PC. Now it is just about 5 minutes later and I am writing this. Best way to clear the "junk" and speed up your phone is go back to what it came with. Keep Apps limited to what you really use. And avoid the Apps promising they can speed up your phone.

  32. Tim S
    March 2, 2015 at 9:20 am

    Depends on the hardware --- If you have a low-end to marginal device (especially Wally World Tablet Specials, example brand = Ematic), and you play a lot of games on it, then you really do need things like "Advanced Task Manager" and/or "App Master" and/or "My Android Tools". Some games can be dirty resource hogs with built-in modules you don't actually need. BUT, you're really not going to benefit much unless the device has been ROOTED and you can get full control. If you don't feel like going down that troublesome road, then cough up the money for a better device. Remember, you get what you pay for. If you have to go cheap, then prepare to do more work in order to make it run smoother. In some cases you really don't need a custom ROM, all you have to do is update your GAPPS package with a signed version after rooting the device and clearing the davlik-cache manually. Look it up, if you don't understand what I'm saying.

  33. Gary
    February 25, 2015 at 3:09 pm

    I have read a lot of articles in the past few days about RAM booster/task killers, and I have used one in the past (on Galaxy S2 with 2.3 & earlier on my S4 with 4.0 or 4.1), gotten rid of it, but now find myself going back to it. Main reason is performance. I have Galaxy S4 updated to Android 4.4.4. I use a fitbit fitness tracker with the Android app for syncing my tracker to my phone and then to my webpage. I have noticed that after I got rid of the RAM Booster app, all of a sudden the fitbit app sometime takes forever to sync and even sometimes errors out. If I go into task manager and look at available RAM when this happens, it is very low as these articles say it should be. But if I manually free up RAM using Android's built in task killer, my fitbit syncs immediately, literally in seconds. So I reinstalled the RAM booster app, setup for manual boosting only with a task bar widget, and tried syncing my fitbit. After several days of testing again, when the widget shows most RAM as being used, my fitbit syncs super slow (minutes) or not at all. If I manually boost the RAM, typically freeing up 800MB, the fitbit syncs within seconds. This is a constant and proves to me that Android may not manage RAM on it's own as well as it is supposed to.

    This is only one example. I have a few other apps that perform the same way, either super slow or error out when RAM is full, but as soon as I boost and free up RAM, the app works like a charm. So I for one will continue using a RAM booster, just setup so it only boosts when I need it to.

    • Joel
      February 25, 2015 at 9:46 pm

      As long as you're doing it manually when you NEED it rather than relying on an automatic background process that invisibly kills tasks, I think that's fine. It's the automated task killers that are counterproductive. :)

  34. Luis
    February 13, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    Check it out ! I got a Moto G 2nd Gen it has 1 Gig of ram and Qualcom procesor Quad Core, I just installed Whatsapp, and it has installed the native Google apps which I never use, since I have a tablet and Computer those apps became useless for me on the Cellphone, it runs like a demon and my battery last over four days. Want a turtle device, load it up with all the garbage apps available on the market. This explains how RAM, APPS, BATTERY AND PROCESSOR ARE RELATED...

  35. kannuchi
    February 9, 2015 at 4:49 am

    Ccleaner of any help? I use it in my windows pc. Now don't know if it's necessary for my android phone. I am not sure if my z3c will need these since they have the latest hardware technology.

  36. Anubhav
    February 9, 2015 at 4:48 am

    My Galaxy tab 4 with kitkat 4.4.2 i s running a little slow now.I frequently use the clean master ram booster. Earlier it was not so slow than now......will I uninstall the clan master. ...Please help.

  37. Comedian Ben Ambers
    February 8, 2015 at 4:42 pm

    After having read this entire thread, I am not only going to remove any and all apps from my phone that fit the description of a task manager/killer/toolkit remover bull$#*!...
    I am then going to return to the AT&T store where I bought my HTC One VX, track down the sales rep who not only sold me the phone, but highly recommended these apps, and I am going to attempt to "manage" the "task" of trying to "RAM" this "killer" ass phone as far into the "background" of his colon as I can thus creating a "junk file" that will take him a week to "clean" no matter how much he "wipes" his "cache"! Thank you for all the insightful info!

  38. Cornel
    February 7, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Hello, I use a KarbonnA5S, what can u recommens to improve my battery.?
    I just installed du battery saver and du booster. It is ok?
    Thank you

  39. Gina
    February 4, 2015 at 4:13 am

    *Clean Sweep

  40. Gina
    February 4, 2015 at 4:09 am

    What about cean sweep for android. kitkat version

  41. freecore
    February 1, 2015 at 6:34 am

    i realise that many boosters out there are fake and drain battery and run ads but smart ram booster seems like a good one! but im not sure if it works much so please reply my previous comment :)

    • Joel
      February 1, 2015 at 2:46 pm

      Hi freecore. Unfortunately I don't have access to Xposed right now so I can't test whether Smart RAM Booster is any good. As a general rule of thumb, if it's automatically clearing stuff in the background, I'd be wary of it. (Unless your version of Android is old, in which case it might not be smart enough to do proper RAM management; that's the only case where a third-party RAM booster might come in handy.)

  42. freecore
    February 1, 2015 at 6:32 am

    hi, i use twitter and instagram and a new feed is loaded every time i use app, so does ram boost by "smart ram boost" (the xposed module) help my phone by clearing previous feed data or is it clearing something else? thanks

  43. Bob
    January 27, 2015 at 4:50 am

    I am sorry, but I do not agree!
    If I open a lot of Apps at the same time, RAM is clogged and opening yet another App takes forever!
    If the Apps are still "open" in the background and I want to use them quickly, sure, then they are available faster, if a TaskKiller is not used. Nevertheless "new" Apps take longer. So, I assume, it depends on what you want to use.
    One can see the RAM usage decrease when many Apps are opened and you close them (swiping them away).
    So I assume Android unnecessarily occupies RAM for Apps, I probably won't be using soon, but are still open in the background.
    I have been using the TaskKiller of the QuickSystemInfo Pro App ever since I got my first Android device. All being JB and higher. So far I am very happy with the TaskKiller! My Devices always run smoother. If opening a new App takes a little longer after the TaskKiller was executed, I have the feeling, it still opens way more quickly as if I have many Apps running in the background!
    Considering any damage ton the hardware, I assume very few use their devices for much longer than one, max. two years. In this time period a damage is not noticeable. I do have devices about 1.5 years old and no decrease in usability so far.

  44. Tachyons
    January 22, 2015 at 5:53 am

    Thanks, I am using DU speed booster and not satisfied with the performance. So i am going to unstall it.

    • Joel Lee
      January 23, 2015 at 3:14 pm

      Glad to be of help, Tachyons. I hope your device performs better now!

  45. hash
    January 16, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    Hey I really need help! Can someone plz tell me how to recover photos deleted by the power clean app. My photos in the app lock photo vault has been deleted. Kindly let me know how to recover it . plz tell me itz possible cuz I'm already depressed about losing all my precious memories :(

  46. Fadly Indrawijaya
    January 10, 2015 at 8:52 pm

    Excuse me. Can i re-share this article in my blog?

    • Joel Lee
      January 23, 2015 at 3:08 pm

      I'm glad you like the article, Fadly! You may link to it and you may excerpt a paragraph or two but please do not reprint it in its entirety. Thanks.

  47. Wii vek
    January 4, 2015 at 5:39 pm

    I am using Moto e as well as htc 820 q...well m using du speed booster and clean master respctively....well by reading here i can get that freeing RAM is not good...So is there any way i can turn off freeing up of RAM by both apps?? And secondly....Does deleting junk files by both the apps is safe? Is there any important file am deleting by use of this app?
    Based on your response i will decide on whether to use these apps or not.
    What other basic things can help me boost performance and managing the memory efficietly.?
    i am more worried about the moto e coz i have got 2 gb of internal space there...and i use it more dan my htc...

  48. Jason
    January 4, 2015 at 12:53 am

    I really liked your article. Great job, nicely written. I won't be installing a RAM "booster" Thanks

    • Joel Lee
      January 23, 2015 at 3:07 pm

      Thanks Jason! I appreciate the feedback. :)

  49. jane
    December 31, 2014 at 4:45 am

    Hmmmm, then why oh why do they make apps that free ram is it's not needed? My dragon touch android is really really slow. So i put on memory boost and it seems a little faster. Not sure if I should take it off. What else can i do to get it faster ?

  50. Aquadig
    December 30, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    Hello. I have a samsung galaxy s4 , recently I have installed greenify to kill tasks and I noticed that something slowed my phone, it had lag. Today I have uninstalled greenify and my phone works normally now. Don't use it anymore, it slows your telephone.

    • Joel Lee
      December 30, 2014 at 8:47 pm

      Greenify can have negative results if it's used to disable the wrong kinds of tasks. I don't know the app well enough to help with troubleshooting, but I agree with your course of action: if an app isn't working as intended, there's nothing wrong with uninstalling it. Thanks for sharing!

  51. Judi
    December 27, 2014 at 11:40 pm

    I've Just recently installed Clean Master in my S3. Although at the beginning it said 1G unnecessary stuff were deleted from my phone, so soon I've discovered my very good phone has became so slow and even cant handle a simple Google search. That's so annoying. I've imminently uninstalled Clean Mater and recommended to all my friends and relatives DO NOT INSTALL CLEAN MASTER. I was searching to find a way to recover all my deleted files by Clean Master. But no luck by now. It seems i have to keep using my new slow phone or reset to factory setting. That's not good at all.

  52. Adam Jenson
    December 18, 2014 at 8:56 pm

    I have heard this claim multiple times but I can't agree. Maybe it’s because I'm a professional programmer but so far there has never been an OS, including Android, that manages memory "smarter" then I do. I have had an Atrix 2 for almost 2 years and while it’s been a great phone, there are multiple apps running services for no reason and no for these apps there is no noticeable difference in launch speed etc. The Facebook app in particular slows any memory intensive apps down; browsers are especially affected by this. So far the only solution I have found is to manually kill off these “bloat” services but in the case of FB it always starts up again. There is no excuse for an app to NOT give users the option to disable its services. The OS simply does not kill these non-essential services off when it needs more memory thus slowing the whole system down.

  53. Techiey
    December 17, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    Am I killing an app if I press the recent apps button and swipe sideways the previous app?

    Going by the context of article, is it recommended to install Snapdragon Battery Guru and Greenify (I have a snapdragon mobile and rooted one)?

    • Joel Lee
      December 30, 2014 at 8:49 pm

      Hi Techiey. As far as I know, there's no negative effect to manually closing an app with the swipe method you described. The problem with **automatic** task killers is that they're constantly scanning and closing apps that aren't necessary to be closed, thus offering no benefit at the expense of battery drain.

  54. Jason Videione
    December 16, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    What a beautiful write up and very clearly explained, I have learned a lot by reading. Thank you Joel Lee for sharing.
    Tried using a task killer app today for the first time I installed and have also uninstalled after using it for just a few hours since it was killing the background apps but draining my phone battery fast.

  55. Stella
    December 14, 2014 at 3:11 am

    Im using Battery Doctor and Clean Master. I turned the auto kill off. and also theres an option n battery doctor called "cpu management" I turned it ON is that ok? And theres a battery doctor widget that you can tap to "save power" should I remove that widget and stop using it? Sometimes, when I turn on my fone battery doctor will remind me of the running apps and recommend me to optimise. *Some of those running are MTK loger, google contacts sync, cell connection service, google backup, nextworklocation. Is it bad to stop these apps? Clean master has also a floating widget. Everytime I tap it, it shows some running apps. But it only shows the apps that I downloaded so is it fine to keep using the floating widget? I dont have any task killing apps aside from battery doctor and clean master.

  56. drufix
    December 13, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Then why does my Samsung tab and my honor 6 come with app pre-installed to kill tasks and ram

    • Joel Lee
      December 30, 2014 at 8:52 pm

      I would not assume that preloaded apps are always there for the benefit of the user. Many phones come loaded with "bloatware" that's better off being disabled. It can be difficult to pinpoint which ones are good and which are bad, but for the most part I've found that preloaded apps tend to be unnecessary.

  57. drufix
    December 13, 2014 at 11:41 am

    Then why does my Samsung tab and my honor 6 come with app pre-installed to kill tasks and ram

  58. Roy
    December 12, 2014 at 8:31 pm

    I have a question. I have Battery Doctor on my phone but I do not know if I should uninstall it. It shows a few apps that consuming power in the "Save" option. It then ask if I want to "optimize." I keep clicking optimize but each time the same set of programs come back. Is this good or bad? What is your recommendation?

  59. jatin
    December 10, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    hey bro i want to speed up my ram ....
    yr my android version is 4.4.2...but it can't load games like candy crush ,temple run 1 2 etc. so what can i do...????? plz help me

  60. Tokyo Drift
    December 8, 2014 at 6:13 am

    Hi! I just bought a Lenovo a526 android phone and it has a SecureIt app which allows me to clean memory usage etc and antivirus. It doesnt support any battery saving feature so i downloaded battery doctor. Also it really bothered me that my lenovo doesnt have a task manager which some androids and iphones have so i downloaded an extension app of clean master. But somehow, my phones ram usage increased from 46%-90%. After I deleted some if my apps from internal strge, it didnt do anything to free my Ram usage.. i just want to ask what to do and do i need to delete these battery saving apps such as clean master and the secureit app? What apps out there in the playstore will give me to kill recent apps as iphones have that wont harm my device? And onelast thing, I have a lenovo launcher already , yet i dowbloaded and used a Go Launcher coz it seems fancy to look on phones.. does this launcher consumes too much Ram? Please help. Tnx ????????

  61. Russell
    December 7, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    I've removed my boost and antivirus apps. For over a week my ram usage has stabilized serious 1.8 to 2.18. With apps I was constantly at 2.3+. My phone runs just as fast if not faster.

  62. Slamet
    December 6, 2014 at 11:17 pm

    i got ASUS zenfone 5 in my hand now...i have read all of your comment and the description of course and i become confused people now...zenfone 5 have some feature like ram free up...whats should i do? whats the reason why asus put it in? should i never use that feature?
    Pls answer me here or via email...sory for my bad english

  63. Russell
    December 5, 2014 at 2:09 am

    I got rid of clean sweep and anti virus apps and ram went from 2.27gb used to 1.97Gbps used. I can definitely tell my phone is running even faster. Galaxy note 4 user.

  64. Curt
    December 3, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    This is interesting information that seems logical and is explained well, but what I find hard to believe is that Samsung (highly competent phone makers who I'm sure employ equally competent developers) actually include a 'Task Manager' application with their products (I have an S5, latest available at the time of my post, and it's still included) It has an available widget that shows you what apps are 'active' and has an option to 'kill' them. If they include this functionality in their code, are they simply catering to the 'gimmick' of task killing, or do they actually find a value in this functionality? Furthermore, apps like 'greenify' which I can't seem to find a bad word about, are based on the fact that when you kill your screen, it 'hibernates' running apps and whatnot. This may not be the same as 'killing' them (I don't know), but it does seem to point to the fact that battery life is saved when these apps are 'disabled' one way (actually killing the tasks) or another (hibernating them like greenify does). 'To kill or not to kill' seems to be a complicated debate that is hard to find actual hard and fast information on, and I think if can vary from perspective to perspective.

  65. Mahesh
    December 2, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    how can I root my phone? I have spice mi-451. please suggest me.

    • cbrom
      December 3, 2014 at 12:33 pm

      you can find it in playstore just write super su

  66. Jan
    November 30, 2014 at 5:02 am

    Joel - you deserve to be commended for the way you you have dealth with this topic! Thanks - really useful and clear opinions for us who try to leave expert work in the hands of experts!

  67. D Sny
    November 29, 2014 at 2:15 am

    I have a Droid DNA, and if my RAM is anywhere around 70% everything slows down, a single picture will load like i am on a dial up cxn, even though i am on 4G. I uninstalled my task killer app, still have system cleaner and i honestly have no idea what you are talking about when you are saying that killing RAM does nothing to speed up your phone, if my phone is at 50% RAM usage, its smooth like butter. Once i leave my phone for awhile, boom, backup to 70% and anything i want to look at will take a full minute to load. The watchdog app didnt really help me decipher anything new and from what i can tell i dont have any background apps taking all of my memory, could the fact that i use the GO launcher for customization? I was also curious as to whether there was an app or something else i could do that could alleviate this lagging problem?

  68. Jagadeep Chilukuri
    November 28, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    I am using galaxy core android 4.1.2 dual cor processor has 1 gb ram.generally when I factory reset the device it generally uses 50% of ram.but ehen I install 3-4 games and apps like facebook and whatsapp it uses 90% of ram and my device gets slower and slower in performance.i used du speed booster and du battery saver to speed up my phone by decreasing the usage of ram.but it did not work so good after some days.can u suggest any app or any process like reboot to keep my device faster?

  69. dark slayer
    November 15, 2014 at 11:05 am

    Now i personally use greenify to freeze my rarely used apps...earlier i used to use various kinds of boosters like du speed booster,clean master was working fine in the starting but after some time of use my phone started lagging a was really I had to factory reset my phone...but now greenify is working nicely in my phone and now my lags rarely

  70. cbrom
    November 13, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    i just used reohsoft ram booster

  71. cbrom
    November 13, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    hey do yuo mean that swapfiles through patitioning have no use

  72. Zero
    November 13, 2014 at 11:11 am

    This isn't Windows you can in fact kill apps and use boosters without problems, we're talking about Linux but realize also that its not necessary. Ram boosters have always traditionally been a gimmicky thing, you can't really achieve anything beyond what is your systems/devices physical limit. Its like those applications from the nineties that promised us to increase the speed of our internet, it can't really be done and is more or less just a tweak preventing important services from actually using up memory. Think of it from the physicists point of view, nothing can travel at the speed of light unless it violates certain physics or unless we discover a faster form of light or faster than light travel.

  73. aaaa
    November 9, 2014 at 10:59 am

    - one processor "must anything to calculate"
    - if hi has nothing to calculate
    (any app is killed)
    - any next app must starting quicker
    if are the loots of app`s running in the background
    (it doesn't matter if is that windows ios or the android)
    - one processor must "share" calculating power to running next app

    Easy ISN`T

  74. kishan jethwa
    November 7, 2014 at 11:01 pm

    Hi I have a Sony xperia z3.
    When I got my task killer/ram booster I noticed that out of the 3gb ram the phone says it has on the ram booster it shows that it only has 2.3gb whichb usable and out of that it uses 1.9 to 2.2 when ive got a few apps open at the same time.

    Why aren't I able to use closer to the 3gb mark, don't you think taking up 700mb for the processor or whatever it needs some of the ram for is too much exactly what is it using the 700mb on?

    Having about 400mb normally left free do you still think it's worth deleting the ram booster?



    • Zero
      November 13, 2014 at 11:21 am

      Tough question to answer this depends on habits and overall your phone in general. Regardless what OS your computer or device is running, it generally takes up a substantial number of gigs. This is simply how the software is designed no way around it, its like like having Bob at your party and Sue complaining that your house seems to full so what happened to all the empty space?! Beyond the OS part the only other thing I can guess is you probably have too many things installed that could be taking up space. Also a ram booster on a phone won't magically change anything on your phone. Problem here is that phones are simply not designed for high end processing power where generally ram boosters come into play and even then are not really used.

      Read my last comment!

  75. EuChavez
    November 6, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    I have a Alcatel One Touch Idol, the apps I mostly use are Facebook, Twitter and Whatsapp but my Ram always gets full and I get a yellow sometimes red warning sign which says Memory Low, and the apps close by themselves. What can I do with this? Any app that I can download to help me? I believe FB is one of the apps that consume more RAM.

  76. Mick King
    November 4, 2014 at 11:16 pm

    Hang on a second there,, just a couple of weeks ago dripler was recommending All in one toolbox which as you know kills apps and boosts cpu, on the strength of your recommendation for this app I downloaded it and a few days later I paid for and purchased the prokey, So now you are saying not to use this app as it is detrimental to the operation of my device (galaxy note 3) well thanks very much for wasting my time and money!

  77. cpufox
    November 1, 2014 at 10:15 pm

    I use the two as well. Clean Master reports CPU hot because of AVG Cleaner quite often. I'm considering removing AVG Cleaner, as probably you should

  78. Dana V
    October 10, 2014 at 8:17 am

    This for Ben S. Hello my name is Dana I'm using the clean master app. and the AVG antivirus app. The problem I'm have is my galaxy s3 gets real hot sometimes. Clean master will notify me to cool down my device. Is there a better all in one app. that won't make my phone get hot while I'm on phone call or playing games and like now it's getting pretty hot so I'm going to cut this short. Please help me.

  79. CWL88
    October 3, 2014 at 9:33 am

    Does anyone know how to dedicate RAM to a specific app? My Contacts app is very slow each time I open it after launching another app. Yes, I do have 4,000+ contacts (though many are duplicates sync-ed with Exchange and LinkedIn). Can I ask Search to search locally without going to the Internet/cloud?


  80. CWL88
    October 3, 2014 at 8:32 am

    Useful. Thanks. Always learning new things. One question: how can I dedicate RAM to Contacts app? I have lots of contacts (4,000+) and maybe now I know why some days it takes several minutes to load the contacts and to find a specific name. Maybe the RAM swapping is taking a lot of time. Is that one reason why my Contacts app is so slow? I am using Xperia Z2.

  81. Ian
    October 1, 2014 at 1:42 am

    I have heard from people whom are much more tech savy than I that memory optimizers/task killers for Android are ridiculous and not to waste my time, however I have first hand experience that contradicts this. This is confusing to me because I trust the people warning me off Clean Master but I have seen distinct improvements in the performance of my device as a result of using the app.

    To be specific, I use a music creation app called Caustic which uses a lot of CPU (it's an amazing app by the way; very powerful, and so draws a lot of power). As I started to make more complex and dense compositions with Caustic they started to skip, the sound popped, and both visuals and audio lagged. I found and started to use Clean Master and the problems disappeared; I can overload Caustic to the gills now and have no problems.

    As I know very little about any of this I remain confused, why is Clean Master one of these things I m being warned against when I ve seen it produce results? Is it harmful to my device?

  82. m.bhamra
    August 1, 2014 at 7:00 am

    What about Greenify ? Is it harmful to use this app ? It hibernates the apps selected by the user.

    • Don
      August 27, 2014 at 3:34 am

      Yeah. I use Greenify and it helps a lot in controlling battery-hogging apps such as Facebook.

  83. Mohamed I
    August 1, 2014 at 12:32 am

    meci very nice

  84. Wordpress development company
    July 28, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    Great information, thanks for sharing it i was also looking for this...

  85. Anupam
    July 22, 2014 at 5:08 am

    I have a samsung phone running stock unrooted rom.I personally use greenify to hibernate processes that would otherwise suck up a lot of battery even when exited via the back button.Greenify works for unrooted phones too,the difference is,it completely stops the app rather than hibernating,which only works on rooted devices.I also use a free app Wakelock Detector to monitor which of my apps are eating up battery by creating a processor and/or a screen wakelock and if I find something resource hoggy...I just add them to the greenify list. Also by enabling an accessibility service greenify automatically closes the ram hoggers after the screen turns off.Pretty neat for me. :)

  86. Pubudu Kodikara
    July 22, 2014 at 3:27 am

    In most of the devices (I use a Note 3), there's a way to kill the running apps by long pressing the home button and then swiping all the running apps out. Is this safe?

    I just turned off auto kill in Clean Master, does this mean it will seize to run in the background or do I have to uninstall it?

  87. Diane Huff
    July 16, 2014 at 5:19 pm

    Hello, My name is Diane. I hope I'm allowed to comment here. I tried to subscribe, but no confirmation email.
    Anyway, I'm a novice to Android's , or any smart phone, so please be understanding.
    I installed Qualcomm's Snapdragon's "BatteryGuru". Is that a Task Killer?
    Seems like it is, but I don't know. It didn't seem to help at all at first, but now I only have to charge my battery once every day or two, depending on how many photos I've taken and downloaded. My new Acer laptop's abphoto does it all by it's self, whether I want to or not and usually double pics.
    The BatteryGuru does give me a lot of control over things I can control, not many.
    I'm sure it's the photo app that's killing me, but that's mostly why I have the phone, so I don't know what kind of advice I'm looking for, except--Should I disable the BatteryGuru or not?
    I used to have to charge my battery once or twice a day.
    Thank you for any advice any of you may want to share.

    • Joel L
      July 17, 2014 at 6:49 pm

      Sorry Diane, I don't have any experience with BatteryGuru so I can't really say one way or another. Hopefully another reader who has use it before can chime in with their experience and knowledge. But if you feel like you're benefiting from BatteryGuru, don't feel pressured to stop using it.

    • Alex
      March 24, 2015 at 3:59 am

      BatteryGuru does not kill any apps, instead works by automatically managing data sync of Google services and your apps, such as Gmail / Facebook etc. It does this by observing your usage behavior, so it would supposedly sync data when you need it, and stop syncing when you don't. That's why it does not seem to help at first, since it takes time to learn your usage pattern.

  88. Erik
    July 15, 2014 at 9:19 am

    My phone always hangs, when i dont use app killer regulary.
    Maybe its broken....

  89. Aaron C
    July 14, 2014 at 1:30 am

    Great article Joel! Thanks :-)

  90. jelabarre
    July 13, 2014 at 4:25 pm

    Well, you wouldn't **NEED** a task killer if apps provided a proper way to **close** them when you were done with them. There seems to be this stupid concept in Android (and possibly WinMobile and iOS, but I don't use those platforms) that once you've opened an app, it will stay running. Sure, some can be manually closed from a task list, but such is **NOT** the case with media players. If you have media playing, the **ONLY** way to actually *STOP* the media player is to outright kill it. It must be some boneheaded internal spec in Android, because it seems EVERY media player has this flaw. When I'm done playing some audio files, or don't want to stream music anymore, I should be able to QUIT the player and have the playback STOP.

    • Joel L
      July 17, 2014 at 6:47 pm

      In theory, an app in the background shouldn't be using much processor power. If it does, it's usually a sign of poor app programming. When that happens, a MANUAL task killer like WatchDog can come in handy. The main problem is with AUTOMATIC task killers.

      As for media players, which ones don't close properly? I currently use DoubleTwist and it does exit gracefully.

  91. Nicolas L
    July 13, 2014 at 11:53 am

    Well, this is very useful information. Thanks for sharing it with us. That's another hundred obsolete Play Store apps.

  92. Michael Schilmoeller
    July 12, 2014 at 6:34 am

    Does the author have any response to the statements in this article?

    • Joel L
      July 12, 2014 at 6:32 pm

      Thanks for the link Michael. As flash memory technology improves, the potential drawbacks will lessen over time. So yes, newer phones with newer hardware will have less to fear in terms of defragmentation and write cycles. There's still the issue of constantly reloading data from SD to RAM, which can impact performance, though improvements to flash memory may reduce that in the future as well.

      But for now, for those of us who aren't using cutting edge hardware, I believe these issues aren't negligible enough to brush aside. :)

  93. Charles R
    July 11, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    What about the clear memory option under the RAM manager found in a lot of Samsung devices? My galaxy s3 came with it when it was released 2 years ago, running ICS, now its updated to 4.4.2, and I find its pretty useful if apps are slowing down.

  94. Clive R
    July 11, 2014 at 9:57 am

    I have a note 3 which has plenty of RAM but I still find that, as the list of apps in memory grows, the performance slows noticeably. This is particularly true when running games one after the other. Until I installed a task killer I found that I had to manually clear the apps two or three times a day. I don't mind if an app takes a moment or two to load as long as it is fast when I am actually using it.
    One answer you suggest is ditching problem apps but if you like an app when it is running you don't want to do that.
    I am yet to be convinced that Androids memory management is as good as you claim it is and certainly with power management it is poor. Things like network connectivity and gps should not need turning on and off - they should go into a standby mode and come on instantly when you do something like take a photo , run facebook or open a browser. Then turn themselves back into standby when they are inactive for xx seconds. I can see how to set apps individually to only update on wifi but there doesnt seem to be (I havent found it at least) a way so set download on wifi only as the default and then make exceptions for one or two apps only. Android settings are still a nightmare and it often takes a long time exploring to find what you want to do.

    • Dark V
      July 12, 2014 at 3:12 am

      Actually you can never design an operating system that does that automatic turning off/standby mode... maybe you could do it for gps... but then again maybe I do not want my gps constantly turning on/off (turning it on/off requires alot more power actually) and if it were to keep gps in "standby" it would actually drain the battery faster (standby is not the same as turning off)... For example consider this - one person is using Google Maps, another is using Sygic, another is using some app some unknown app for maps, some users don't use facebook, some users are concerned about privacy and don't want to share location on facebook, other want do share everything, some people don't have enough mb on their data plan to afford running the browser on data (it it's automatically turned on, or even if it detects the wifi is connected and remains in standby -> it wastes battery)... any os is (or at least should be) build to give you the bare necessities while you as a user should personalize it the way that YOU need (it should also be as lightweight as possible so as to use as few system resources as possible)...
      you could do the automatic turning on/off with tasker/llama -> make it start your gps/data/wifi/ect. automatically when you enter ceirtan apps and turn the options off xx seconds after you exit the apps.... you can also do the "download on wifi by default" -> if you use Opera Max you can block the access of your chosen apps so they don't use the data connection....
      and if your phone is rooted you could disable the problem apps instead of ditching them (doing this manually would take longer so it only applies to less-than-frequently-used apps that you like)... or again you could use tasker to automatically enable/disable certain problematic apps so then have the best of both worlds....
      as for the settings I personally don't see the nightmare... I use SlimRom on my Tab2 and AOKP ROM on my S3 + I've used the stock roms, cyanogenmod, pac rom, and alot of others-> and I haven't seen the nightmare part yet :-? (if you could maybe be more specific :-? )...

  95. Nikolaj Knudsen
    July 11, 2014 at 5:08 am

    CCleaner FTW :-)

  96. TBOD
    July 11, 2014 at 12:44 am

    Any power user knows this article is offering poor advice. Android perhaps was designed to handle RAM efficiently and SSD are supposed to be as fast as RAM, but, in actuality, neither is true and power users know it. Without being rooted and using a powerful task killer, you'll spend more time sitting around waiting for your Android device to swap memory than doing anything productive. I have a half dozen different smart phones with stock and custom roms all the way up to CM11 and it makes no difference. The only exception somewhat so far has been my HTC M8 with 2gb of RAM and Android 4.4.2 and that's partly because it is not used as heavily for multitasking as my other devices. Even then I have to flush it every now and then by using a Task Killer or hard rebooting.

  97. Kaman lee
    July 10, 2014 at 10:14 pm

    Im sorry but I think Android handles ram horrible. Cant really say the OS is great knowing that sometimes with 3gb of ram and it still struggles sometimes, but yet I see a windows phone or iphone with 1gb of ram and they Os still runs smoothly. Something is wrong here.. That means the OS is not managing the ram efficiently.

  98. Dave
    July 10, 2014 at 8:43 pm

    Still a bit confused. If I want to use the "back" key to exit Chrome, I need to back up through ALL the recent web pages before Chrome actually closes. And then... sometimes Chrome will STILL sore up as an active task. What I have been doing, is opening the Active App program and selecting "End All." So I'm wondering if doing this is somehow bad for my phone poor tablet.

    • Joel L
      July 10, 2014 at 8:48 pm

      I'm not too familiar with Active Apps but if you're done using Chrome and don't intend to open it up again, ending it with Active Apps should be fine.

  99. Krzysztof B
    July 10, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    All the information in this article seems to be clear, I cant agree. If I kill all unnecessary apps other apps like browser or keyboard starts much faster then when I have multiple background apps. Besides when I have more free RAM phone is much more responsive.

  100. Dave
    July 10, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    Am I understanding correctly that if I finish using an app, that I should simply leave it "active?" For example, if I press the "home"button now to return to the home screen, it is ok to leave my chrome browser active? I have been using "Active Apps" to "end" any apps I am not using. I think you are saying that it is better to let android free up ram only as it needs it.

    • Ben S
      July 10, 2014 at 4:34 pm

      Yes and no. When you use the Home button to leave Chrome, it keeps your session in the background for when you pull it up later. You can open other apps or anything else, and when you come back to Chrome you'll be right where you left off.

      When you exit an app (Chrome in this case) with the back button, it closes it out (provided it's a well-made app, which Chrome is). You'll still see it "running in the background" if you use an app like WatchDog to view processes, but it's simply being kept there to launch more quickly next time you open it.

      In short, if you're planning on coming back to where you're at in an app, use the Home button. If you're all done for now, close out of it with Back or swiping it away from the Recent menu. That's how I manage!

    • Joel L
      July 10, 2014 at 4:50 pm

      As Ben said, there's a slight difference between closing an app and clearing it from RAM. Android won't free up the RAM used by an app until the app has been closed or killed. So, in general, if you're done with an app, you should close it. The RAM won't be freed until Android needs to free it (just in case you decide to open the app up again).

  101. Andrew
    July 10, 2014 at 10:42 am

    Windows has far more than a 'garbage cleaner' - its memory manager is far more capable than implied here and is perfectly able to manage memory as well as or better than Android. It's a full blown OS.

    It will page out processes (assuming users haven't incorrectly set small or no paging files) as required, aiming to keep as much in memory at a time. There is no point in having empty/free memory, it's just a waste.

    • RCW
      July 10, 2014 at 12:24 pm

      I agree Windows memory management hasn't been a issue in a very long time. And even when it was, it's not likely that these fly-by-night rip-off memory managers had the "know how" to do anything but rip you off.
      My advice is leave memory management to only people who have a clue how to manage it. And those people are the people who wrote the OS you're using.

    • Joel L
      July 10, 2014 at 4:45 pm

      You're right. I didn't mean to illustrate that Windows had poor memory management, but rather that people tend to take "memory management tips" from older versions of Windows and apply them to Android - a practice that doesn't make much sense when you think about it.

      I agree with RCW: a mature operating system likely optimizes its memory management already. Leave it to the pros!

  102. Ashish Kumar
    July 10, 2014 at 6:52 am

    The Inbuilt Ram boosters in Samsung devices says ''Clear memory'' is also behaves like that?????

    • Joel L
      July 10, 2014 at 4:42 pm

      I don't have an in-built RAM booster so I can't say for sure. Is it automatic or manual? As a rule of thumb, if it only clears memory when you tap a button, it's fine, but if it's always running and always clearing memory at all times, then it's bad.

  103. Cris
    July 10, 2014 at 5:27 am

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for attempting to cut through all of that BS to which most Android users appear to subscribe.

  104. hrv
    July 10, 2014 at 3:35 am

    Thanks for the article and comments. What about greenify. Do you recommend it? I have a device with only 1g ram. I use greenify to hibernate apps.

    • Ben S
      July 10, 2014 at 4:31 pm

      Greenify is great for apps that you want to keep on your phone, but don't use often or that run hoggishly in the background. For example, you may want to Greenify Facebook to prevent it from auto-syncing, or Greenify a game that runs in the background more than it should.

      Don't Greenify a ton of apps, since if you're constantly opening and re-hibernating them it's a lot of work, but if you have some apps that you use infrequently, try Greenify.

      I use it on my phone for a few apps. It isn't totally necessary, but it's a good app.

      Remember that it's always good to uninstall apps you don't use much.

  105. David White
    July 10, 2014 at 12:23 am

    My LG Enact has a built in Task Manager, which will allow you to close all recent apps. could using this cause the problem you describe?

      July 10, 2014 at 12:39 am

      No, the recents window is usefull (you can clear it with no problems)... the problems come from automatic app killers ( that run in the background killing innocent apps :P )... you can use your task manager to "kill" (it's actually a semi-app-kill as it does not close the app's background service if it has one) the apps... it's actually the first thing recommended by Guy ( ) for improving battery life

    • Joel L
      July 10, 2014 at 4:39 pm

      Like Vip3r mentioned, the issue is mostly with automatic task killers. Manually closing all recent apps is fine. :)

  106. Omar
    July 9, 2014 at 11:24 pm

    I only use the most essential apps for my needs (with a little games installed here and there). However, there are two questions I'd like to ask and it would be a great help to me if you were to give me direct answers.
    1. Should I stop freeing up RAM using Clean Master or All in one tool box?
    2. Can I clear the cache, delete temp and unnecessary files.
    3. What is your app recommendation
    4. Have I done any harm to my devices by continuously freeing up RAM?
    5. What will happen now that I stop freeing up RAM, won't my device slow down?

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 11:50 pm

      If you're allowing the app to free RAM automatically, it may be better to disable that function. Android likes to keep its RAM full (there's no harm in that) so you shouldn't experience a performance hit by stopping. I can't make any proclamations without actually looking at your phone but you most likely did not damage it by continuously freeing up RAM.

      Cache, temp files, and other junk files are fine to delete as long as you know they won't damage your system.

      July 9, 2014 at 11:54 pm

      1. You should only try to at least use the free RAM features as little as possible (if you can stop using them = great :) )

      2.Yes you should do it from time to time - depending on how much you install/uninstall apps ( the more apps you uninstall the more you should clear the cache ) - though I should note that some apps do use the cache to run faster (the photo gallery for example saves the photo thumbnails into cache and start a bit slower when you clear that cache)
      Considering however the fact that you have a note 3 - i assume you do not have internal memory space problems so you should be fine if you clean the cache once a month or once every couple of months ;)

      3. Between the two I'd personally chose Clean Master (unless you use other functions from all in one toolbox that are not present in CM, in which case I'd use all in one)

      4. No, don't worry, your device is fine ;)

      5. Your device will slow down by a little bit in certain situations... For example if your RAM is full and you want to start a new app then it will take a bit of time before the android RAM manager will free up the needed memory (but, don't worry, you won't have time to get bored - a few seconds at most)
      I used CM alot on my Tab 2 and it actually ran a bit faster after I froze CM (but I can't say definitively)... But for app killing use the recents window and keep it clean (that'll give you all the memory you need so you won't have to wait for the ram to be freed when you start another app)
      hope it helps :)
      and if you still have questions feel free to ask them, have a nice day :)

      July 10, 2014 at 12:32 am

      Apologies - i got you confused with another reader :(
      However all the points still relate to your questions, except the no. 2 answer (the part about the note 3 only)
      and so i'll add to the answer:

      2. ...clear that cache).
      If your devices have enough space (at least 1-2 gb of internal memory), you should be fine with cleaning the cache every month or so. If however either one of your devices has less than 512mb you should probably clean the memory on a weekly basis (or every 2 weeks) just to be on the safe side :) - cleaning the cache more that once a week is in most cases overkill...

      - apologies again mate... :(

  107. Darrin
    July 9, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    I have a Nexus 7 tablet and I use Clean Master. I find that the game boosting feature does work. I ran a recently downloaded game via its regular icon and it was slow and choppy. When I run it from the Clean Master game enhancing folder it frees up some ram first, and the game runs perfectly. Aside from that I do not have performance problems with or without the Clean Master app. So for my games I'm keeping it.

  108. Omar
    July 9, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    I am currently using Clean Master and All in one tool box for two of my phones. One is running version 4.4.4 while the other one is running 4.0.4. Should I continue to use these apps or not. If not what would be your final and dead end recommendation of an app.

      July 9, 2014 at 10:16 pm

      depends on what you use them for and how fast your phone is running compared to how fast you want it to run...

      if speed is your main concern that the less apps you have running on your phone the better

      if however speed is not an issue, than you can very well use the apps for their other functions besides the app killer

      - for clean master you can go to settings and deactivate any automatic app killing
      - for all in one tool box i don't really know much, i only used it a little bit because it seemed to hog too much of my memory (my opinion thought - so you should check before you decide what you want to do with it)

  109. Andrew
    July 9, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    Incorrect about Windows. Its RAM manager is just as capable and works in the same way.
    Empty RAM is wasted RAM.

      July 9, 2014 at 9:10 pm

      though you are correct that windows has a garbage cleaner which frees up ram automatically, it is not nearly as aggressive as the android version. The android version of the garbage cleaner frees as much ram as possible whenever it can while the windows version utterly fails to clean up ram on most of the occasions... around last year i had to run some massive sql scripts for my work (computer was running windows 7 with 2gb ram) and the ram used by sql while the script was running was around 1.5gb (from somewhere around 300mb at the start of the script) -> the garbage cleaner worked only after all the scripts had been run.... android however will clear ram even from running apps if it is not actively used => android ram cleaner = more capable at freeing up ram

  110. Syaheed Mazlan
    July 9, 2014 at 7:45 pm

    How about cleaning JUNK files, does it related to RAM clearing or what?

    Thanks for advice.

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 10:37 pm

      No, cleaning junk files is not the same as RAM clearing. It's good to clean out junk files every once in a while. :)

  111. angie Jones
    July 9, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    The only task killer I have is with my AVG antivirus and an AVG cleaner. They come pre-installed! Is there a way of turning them off?

      July 9, 2014 at 7:45 pm

      no, you can't turn off the task killer in AVG (it is part of the antivirus), but from what i've seen it only works manually so it's fine :)

  112. Howard
    July 9, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    I have the note 3.I use clean master do I need it at all. All the time it informs me my memory is running low and to create this and that.
    Would I be better off if I didn't use it?
    Also I uninstalling apps by closing them first and then clearing the cache and then deleting.... But clean master frequently States there is stuff left over.... Surely Android should do this by itself?

    • Dark Vip3r
      July 9, 2014 at 7:11 pm

      some apps actually leave traces (files/folders) even after you've cleared the data/cache... Android does some of the work by itself, but some apps create folders/files in different locations which android "doesn't see" when clearing cache/data, and if the app hasn't been written to clean after it, the files/folders remain behind...
      I did use clean master alot both on my SIII and tab 2 and from what I've noticed my tab actually ran faster without clean master (though not by alot)... but then again it's cache cleaner was good... so it got me thinking and i decided the best solution (for me) was to just freeze (or uninstall if you're not rooted) and just unfreeze it (reinstall) from time to time to clean my phone... it seemed far better than having it running permanently...
      Now about the clean master statements... If you'll try the advance clean option you'll see that Clean Master actually cleans the thumbinal cache for the gallery (which get redone every time you open the photo gallery) and other some such places, so you can never actually achieve a "no more cleaning needed" statement for long (while using the phone, that is) -> what i recommend is that you just clean when there's more than 10mb to be cleaned (or once a month) especially since note 3 has a large enough internal memory to afford around 10-20mb of nothing scraps ;)

  113. Dark Vip3r
    July 9, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    personally i started using a custom made tasker profile for enabling/disabling certain rarely-used apps or apps that require some setting (wifi/mobile data/bluetooth/gps) to be relevant... for example i used it auto-disable bittorrent sync when I'm not connected to my home wifi or to auto-enable opera max when i turn on mobile data or any app that i rarely use and do not require a service running for it... that way i can keep some ram free so any newly opened app can start faster (it takes a bit of time for the native ram manager to free ram - it does not do it instantly) and it keeps my cpu as unused as possible... and from what i've seen there have been real improvements to both speed and battery... Though it's worth to mention that disabled apps do NOT auto-update (play store wise) so one must find a way to enable them for updating (i personally just auto-enable them all when i open the play store and the wifi is connected)...

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 5:53 pm

      Wow, using Tasker to handle all of that is pretty smart. Even better that you can notice a performance increase from it. I wonder if there are any downsides to doing it that way? Thanks for sharing! I hadn't considered that.

    • Dark VIp3r
      July 9, 2014 at 6:53 pm

      some of the downsides are:
      - the fact that you have to use tasker on a regular basis (if you use only for that it's not worth it)
      - tasker gets a spike in cpu/ram usage when it enables/disables the apps (the more apps enabled/disabled at once->the bigger the spike)
      - app take a bit longer to load (somewhere around 5 seconds -> 2 seconds to enable the app -> another 2-3 seconds to launch it) -> which is not really a problem for less-than-frequent-used apps but it becomes really bothersome for frequently used apps
      - apps don't auto-update (as stated in my previous post) unless you enable them (so you'd have to have an updates enabler task that gets them all enabled when you're in a position to update - preferably home wifi)
      - the biggest disadvantage is however the fact that you need a task to enable and launch each of the disabled tasks (though you can use go the app page in google play and enable it from there, or from other apps that can freeze apps - it would take alot longer than a tasker task to enable and launch it)

      though there may be other downsides i haven't observed yet... the logic behind it was disabled apps don't use cpu/ram and don't restart when killed - they remain disabled so it's a great way to deal with badly written apps or just apps that refuse to die when you don't need them :P... example: a particularly troublesome app for me was quip/evernote since they had a background service wich was used, i guess, for background note sync and stuff -> now i can just kill them and only let them sync the notes when i open them instead of running all day checking to see if they can sync my damn unmodified notes :P (i don't take alot of notes :P)...

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 10:36 pm

      That was much more in-depth a reply than I was expecting. Thanks a ton, Vip3r. I won't be using the Tasker method (I don't use Tasker often to begin with) but it's definitely nice to know that it's possible. Thanks so much.

      July 9, 2014 at 11:32 pm

      there is another solution, though it requires a bit more work and it won't be as good:

      instead of a tasker profile, one could use the tasker "app factory" and build a scene with just the basics (enable/disable certain apps) then export it as an app and use it just to enable/disable the entire list of apps or a single app at a time (but this would be at most what it could do, so as to not have the tasker app running in background and using up resources)...
      though, this method would have a much lower level of automation (without making it a background service) it could still be usefull in certain circumstances... hope it helps :)

  114. Syaheed Mazlan
    July 9, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    Hello, i'm using xperia devices. As i know, recent xperia devices doesnt allow us to move apps to SD Card, all of them located in Internal Storage, so when i read about this issue, i think that Clear the RAM wont bother the battery life etc as you state in the post since its not related to SD card at all right (correct me if i'm wrong). So, is it worth to uninstall all the task killer i have? which i think became part of my habit to clear out the RAM whenever the screen is on.

    Thanks, really enjoy reading these informations.

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 5:52 pm

      Hi Syaheed. Yes, clearing the RAM with a task killer won't do any good for you.

      Android is designed to fill up as much RAM as it can to keep the phone running smoothly. If you clear the RAM, Android will still be constantly reloading data that it normally wouldn't need to reload, thus slowing down performance. This is true even if your apps aren't stored on an SD card.

  115. Pete
    July 9, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    My girlfriend and I both have recently using the "clean master" app for our S3 and Note 2 devices, which kills tasks and improves battery life somehow. Mainly downloaded it for the S3 device as she was having issues with a draining battery within minutes and somewhat sluggish phone. So far the app has done wonders to help hers and my battery life, but she is also close to her limit with storage space and could be a huge reason for her issues. Are defragging or task killing, with apps such as clean master, on the newer Androids are bad in the long run? Also, Why would the app "watch dog" be better?

    • Ben S
      July 9, 2014 at 3:18 pm


      WatchDog, which I also use (have been for years, almost since I got my first Android) is not a task killer. It's more of a Task Manager, like the one built into Windows. You can see which apps are using a lot of the CPU, which is what contributes to battery drain.

      The problem, as Joel explained, is that apps running in the background on Android are not necessarily using any battery. If an app is misbehaving - perhaps it's improperly written and does not stop running when you exit out of it with the back button - killing it will stop its high usage. In short, WatchDog gives you information so that you can kill a misbehaving app if needed, while a task killer blindly kills all apps for no reason.

      I used Clean Master on my old phone that didn't have a lot of space. It's gotten way too bloated recently, but some features of it are still decent. You do not need the task killer or any of that stuff. I would only use it to clean out cache, residual files, etc. to save space.

      Your phone really doesn't need to be defragmented. Only traditional hard drives do.

  116. Nahla D
    July 9, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    How about those battery saver apps? Don't they have their own task killers within? Are they also consuming too much RAM?

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 1:37 pm

      Battery saver apps can help, but it depends on their methods. If "task killing" is one of their purported features, try to disable it. If you can't, find a different app. That being said, there are legitimate battery saver apps that work using other methods, but that's outside the scope of this article. :)

    • Kononjump
      August 7, 2014 at 10:39 am

      In The lin? of article: there is an app called Llama (or just Lama) which can troggle your wifi, GPS, Bluetooth, screen brightness and many more automaticaly. It's incredibly powerfull but doesn't consume battery. I can totaly recomend it.

  117. David
    July 9, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    Ok, I couldn't help to read more. So, you say to use apps that are lightweight and don't drain the battery as much. How do I know which apps these are. I'm guessing the lightweight ones are the ones that are smaller in size. Should I be using CleanMaster? CleanMaster suggests moving files from internal memory to external memory. Will this slow things down?

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 1:34 pm

      Unfortunately, unless someone tells you directly that an app is a resource hog, it tends to be a test-and-see process. Check your phone's battery usage statistics (usually found somewhere in the Android Settings) whenever you feel like your battery life feels short.

    • Federico G
      July 9, 2014 at 1:42 pm

      No, lightweight apps see those that don't keep the CPU on for long periods of time. Mobile CPUs have the ability to throttle their performance on demand, so when your phone is in your pocket the CPU is going to consume much less energy than when you are actually using it. But some apps need to run some services on the background to keep the information updated and, you know, doing their things. When apps keep the CPU "awake" for too long they hurt your battery life. You can go into your phone's battery stats (in settings) and for every app in the list you can tap and see how long they kept the CPU awake. Compare this to your "screen on" time and you might find some apps that are just too demanding.

    • Federico G
      July 9, 2014 at 1:46 pm

      Nope. It's just the way Android works. RAM that is not in use is wasted RAM. Don't bother too much about it. Keep an eye on CPU load and, most of all, battery life.

  118. David
    July 9, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    Ok, before I read all this, let me stop you at the beginning. You said, Once upon a time, it was useful. How far back are you talking? I have a Galaxy SII that is rooted and running CyanogenMod. Would my phone benefit from task killers?

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 1:27 pm

      Hey David. It actually depends more on the version of Android than the model of the phone. Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) and all prior versions did not have good native task management, which is why task killers were so popular back then. If you have CyanogenMod, you probably have a more recent version, in which case you're in the clear.

    • David M
      July 9, 2014 at 1:31 pm

      So, I shouldn't need a task killer while using Cyanogenmod even though my hardware is old?

    • Joel L
      July 9, 2014 at 1:39 pm

      Go into your Android Settings (or whatever is the equivalent on your phone) and look for an "About Phone", "About Device", or something along those lines. It will tell you the version of Android that's running.

    • Anonymous
      August 3, 2014 at 3:21 am

      I am using note II
      ...... It seems speed upped by m gonna leave it ... But most bug security apps comes with boosters .... What to do ?

    • aaaa
      November 9, 2014 at 10:49 am

      All that "boys" do not understand how "hardware working"
      - task managers are good if they running not "at selves"
      - it doesn`t matter if is the hardware running on windows ios or the linux
      - all background "processes" use and battery and processor
      - if they running not on background
      - not a battery not a processor
      AND NEXT APP`S will be starting quicker

    • David
      December 1, 2014 at 8:59 pm

      3 or 4 years ago, i read you worked out the bugs.

    • Jonathan
      December 11, 2014 at 2:43 am

      Some of this does not make sense. How is RAM related to the SD card? You did not really explain much at all in that 1 sentence how boosters, cleaners, and task killers (which don't actually get rid of ram), make the device slower. Could you please explain shortly, simply and to the point with more info. and less seeming bias? Thanks.

    • Not Jonathan
      December 27, 2014 at 11:31 am

      Jonathan: it was very clear in the article. You need to learn to read and comprehend. Android keeps some apps in RAM so that they start faster next time you open them. If you remove them from RAM they have to be opened from SD memory which is slower than RAM.

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