October 22, 2015

Facebook iOS Battery Drain

iOS 9 added the ability for users to see battery usage by individual app for the last 24 hours and 7 days. This is the first time I know of that you have been able to see how much battery each app is using. I was looking around in the settings a couple of weeks ago and noticed that the Facebook app was always on the top of my list. That made no sense to me. I open the app several times a day, but I don’t spend much time in it. I check out what is new and then close it. It was #1 on the battery usage with “Background Audio” listed as the reason. That makes no sense. I don’t listen to anything in Facebook, and I’ve never had the notifications turned ont.

I found this post on Macstories talking about the very issue I was experiencing. I immediately went into the Facebook settings and turned off the auto-play video, which I didn’t even realize you could do[1]. I have also started killing the app when I am not using it.

Facebook quickly dropped down the list of most battery usage. I doubt fore-qutting the app every time had much of an impact. I feel like turning off auto-play video solved the background audio issue. This was validated by a Techcruch article.

Facebook has confirmed it is investigating reports of excessive battery drain caused by its iOS app apparently continuing to run processes in the background — even with background app refresh disabled.

Facebook was one of the first apps I installed on my very first iPhone. It has been there from the beginning, presumably draining my battery the entire time. I was late jumping on the smartphone bandwagon. One of my largest reasons for holding out was the massive drop in battery life I was sure to experience[2]. It is frustrating to learn that an extraneous app has been siphoning off precious battery all of these years.

  1. Or else I would have turned it off a long time ago.  ↩

  2. I still miss the good ol’ days of charging my phone once or twice a week.  ↩

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