Facebook Admits its App is Sucking Your iPhone’s Battery Dry
Last week we had mentioned that the Facebook app for iOS may be the reason why your iPhone’s battery is draining faster than usual. Facebook has now confirmed that it is indeed their iOS app that is causing the battery issue. Many users have reported that the Facebook app in the battery menu shows as consuming quite a bit of battery even when usage is at a minimum.
“We found a few key issues and have identified additional improvements, some of which are in the version of the app that was released today,” wrote Facebook’s Ari Grant yesterday.
The first issue we found was a “CPU spin” in our network code. A CPU spin is like a child in a car asking, “Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?”with the question not resulting in any progress to reaching the destination. This repeated processing causes our app to use more battery than intended. The version released today has some improvements that should start making this better.
Indeed, Facebook did come out with an iOS update yesterday (as it usually does every 2 weeks for improvement in speed and reliability). The update description did not mention any ‘bug’ fixes, but going by the word of Grant, you may start seeing some improvements once you’ve updated the app.
Another issue for battery drain is due to the way Facebook handles audio playback. “If you leave the Facebook app after watching a video, the audio session sometimes stays open as if the app was playing audio silently. This is similar to when you close a music app and want to keep listening to the music while you do other things, except in this case it was unintentional and nothing kept playing. The app isn’t actually doing anything while awake in the background, but it does use more battery simply by being awake,” Grant said, promising that their new fixes will solve this issue and will remove background audio completely.
You can download the update now, if you haven’t already. Don’t expect the update to solve all the battery issues at once. It may take a couple of more updates for Facebook to completely be rid of bugs that are sucking all the juice.
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