Facebook is easily one of the most popular third-party iPhone apps on the planet. As it turns out, it might also be one of the biggest culprits of iPhone battery drain, according to recent findings brought to light by a former Apple Store Genius. The good news, however, is that it is remarkably easy to stop Facebook from eating up your iPhone’s battery, and in this post we’ll show you how.
First things first: Why is the Facebook app killing your iPhone’s battery life?
According to ComputerWorld, Facebook runs several processes in the background for a few reasons, the most interesting of which may relate to an upcoming effort to launch a new mobile VoIP calling service tied to its app.
Whether or not that’s the case — the more obvious answer may be that the background processes relate to Facebook’s in-built messaging service — a former Apple Store Genius ran some tests and confirmed that the Facebook iPhone app regularly runs processes in the background and eats up precious battery charge.
I just got the iPhone 5s about two weeks ago, and thought my battery was draining a little too quickly. Being the nerd that I am, 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% to 17%. Crazy. I’ve never seen that happen before on an iPhone. The iPod touch exhibits this behavior, to my memory, although I haven’t tested it in a while. For the iPhone, the battery percentage is usually pretty consistent.
But don’t despair, iPhone users. There’s a simple fix.
As is the case with any app that might be a drain on your battery when it’s not in use, adjusting two simple settings will completely eliminate the background battery drain.
First, go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services and disable the toggle next to Facebook. Then do the same for the Facebook listing in Settings > General > Background App Refresh.
For some more important tips on how to extend your iPhone’s battery life, check out these 15 tips for squeezing as much battery life as possible out of your iPhone.