How Facebook Is Killing Your iPhone’s Battery Life (And What You Can Do About It)

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Does your iPhone battery constantly drain from 100% to nearly 0%? You might think the battery is to blame, but there could be a far more dastardly culprit: Facebook.

Over at Overthought.org, an ex-Apple Genius with much experience trying to determine the cause of low battery life in iDevices claims that Facebook’s app is one of the biggest battery drains there is… at least on iPhone with Location Services and Background App Refresh enabled.

He says:

I decided to run the app Instruments from Xcode, Apple’s developer tool, in order to see what the problem was. Basically, Instruments acts as an Activity Monitor for your iPhone, allowing developers (or nerds like me) to see every process currently running and how much memory and processing power each app is using in real-time.

“During this testing, Facebook kept jumping up on the process list even though I wasn’t using it. So I tried disabling Location Services and Background App Refresh for Facebook, and you’ll never guess what happened: my battery percentage increased. It jumped from 12 percent to 17 percent. Crazy. I’ve never seen that happen before on an iPhone.

So why is Facebook using so much battery? Simple: Facebook wants to run its own VoIP network. And ComputerWorld speculates that this is because Facebook wants to become bigger than a social network, but a worldwide communication network.

This is why it bought WhatsApp, and why it is constantly pinging in the background: Facebook is planning on launching a worldwide telecom that piggybacks off of every device, including iPhone and Android.

It’s an intriguing theory, but luckily, if it (or the battery usage) on your device worries you, there’s an out: just disable Location Services (Settings>Privacy>Location Services) and Background App Refresh (Settings>General>Background App Refresh) on your device!

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About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his girlfriend and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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