Why Do Android Phones Get Slow and How To Recover Them


If you bought a phone 1-2 years back, it most probably has slowed down a lot now. Apps take extra time to load, the UI lags, and games are not quite the fun they used to be. But why do Androids phones get slow? What did you do to deserve this? You might already know the answer but haven’t realized it yet. Well, let me put it down for you. And yes, there are solutions to it! Let’s have a look.   

Main Reasons Why Your Android Is Slowing Down

Background Apps

If your phone is running a large number of apps in the background then it will surely affect the performance of the phone in one way or the other, be it frequent lagging or shorter battery life. Most common examples of heavy background apps are email managers, messaging apps and social media clients that need to be on their toes for updates.

Low Internal Storage

You probably know about this one. If your phone’s internal storage is running low, it will start slowing down. The main reason is that our phones come with Flash Storage which is inefficient at managing higher volumes. You might have noticed the storage warning notification when this happens.

Time and Updates

This is probably biggest reason for a phone to slow down. With time, the hardware of the phone becomes outdated and loses the ability to keep it up with continuously updated software. The new software which is made in accordance with the new hardware specifications turns out too heavy for older phones. Hence, your phone gives it up after a year and a half, which is the average time between two major OS releases.  

App Sizes

Another reason is that apps are getting bigger and way too quickly. The ABI research study highlighted that Android apps have gained 10% more weight since last spring, out of which Android games skyrocketed to 400% of their original size. Now, how is a phone supposed to deal with that?

While all these points are true for most of the phones, it doesn’t mean they are applicable to all phones. Flagship phones, for example, will have little to no effect with constant OS updates flowing in. In fact, they will have better performance with updates because they have the hardware to keep up with the latest software, but eventually, they will get old and will also get slower too. You would change them by then anyway.

What all can you do?

Now we have a fair idea what’s killing the performance. Here is what you can do!

The first thing that I want to say here is that you should stop using apps which tend to ‘boost your RAM’. Android is pretty good at optimising the RAM by itself. Moreover, these apps don’t even work, they cannot actually ‘clean up’ or  ‘boost’ your RAM. They just have a placebo effect and aren’t really doing anything. Instead, these apps are the most popular contributors to heavy background processes.


This app actually force closes apps that you choose to. If you’re rooted then the task is even easier.

Just select the apps you want to force close and then make a widget of hibernation on the desktop. Then with one click, you can close all the chosen apps.

Apps like Facebook and Snapchat etc. run in the background and consume a lot of battery, so you can choose to hibernate these apps.

SD Maid

This is a cleaner app that actually cleans. It doesn’t offer you to clear RAM or anything like that. But there are many other things that this app offers which will help you speed up your phone.


There are features like Corpse Finder, which clears the files left by the apps that you have uninstalled and Cache Cleaner, which cleans the unneeded cache.

Another thing called the Duplicate Finder which gets rid of all the duplicate files on your phone. A downside is that you have to buy pro version to automate these tasks, but you can always do them manually. There are many other useful tiny features in this app that are worth exploring.


Overclocking means taking your processor clock frequency over its specified limit. It can definitely improve the performance of phone in terms of speed but it can potentially decrease the battery life of the phone. Moreover, check for your phone’s processor on XDA developers.

Kernel Auditor App
Kernel Auditor App

The Kernel Auditor is a nice example for this purpose. You can control overclock specifications pretty easily with this app.

Custom ROMs and Kernels

Many manufacturers use a skin on top of Android and introduce bloatware in their phones, which most of us don’t use. Custom ROMs can offer stock Android experience without any bloatware, they also offer a lot of small additional helpful features. 99% of the times these custom ROMs offer better performance than official firmware. But you have to choose your custom ROMs wisely.

Lineage OS
Lineage OS

If your phone is officially supported by ROMs like LineageOS then the chances are you’ll have excellent experience with ROMs, on the other hand, if your ROM is not an official one then it may result in poor performance.

Again, this is just a general conclusion and might not be true for all. You can read the user reviews about various ROMs before going for a particular one. Popular ROMs are generally considered to be good.The key is that the ROM should be stable enough for daily use and the only way to know if a ROM is good or not is to try it yourself.

Custom kernels, on the other hand, don’t have that much of an issue.You can flash a custom kernel on your stock ROM too if that ROM is supported by the kernel. Usually, Kernels are targeted towards a specific performance mode. Some are tuned for battery life, some for performance and some for other tasks like gaming etc. It ultimately comes down to your preference.

If you are thinking to try these tricks out, do share the results you get below in comments! Let us see which method works the best. Stay tuned for more coming up soon.

Also Read: Flagship Lookout – 4 Flagship Smartphones To Buy From 2016