It's True, The New Fb App Is Killing Your Phone Battery

By Michael Avery in Science and Technology On 23rd October 2015

#1 Why Is This Important?

Because battery life already sucks on our phones.

#2 Long Story Short

Facebook has admitted that its app is draining your iPhone battery.

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#3 Long Story

It seems your suspicions were correct: Facebook is draining all the juice out of your iPhone. And not just because you're addicted to the social media app.

Ever since the release of iOS 9 and its handy battery menu, users have been complaining that Facebook uses way more than its fair share of power. But what might have seemed like a bit of whiny groupthink (I mean, it's an iPhone, of course the battery is going to run out within an hour) has now been confirmed by Facebook themselves.

Yesterday evening a post by Facebook's Ari Grant acknowledged that the company had found issues in the app and are updating it, as well as applying a bunch of additional improvements.

At heart were two quirks in particular, the first to do with CPU spin or spinlock which causes a thread trying to acquire a resultant lock to simply wait in a loop while repeatedly checking if the lock is available. Grant likened it to a child in the back of a car repeatedly asking, "Are we there yet?" with the question not actually helping you reach your destination. The repeated process quickly sucks down the battery.

The second is a bit more ham-fisted, Facebook sometimes leaving audio sessions running from recently played videos even thought the app isn't actually spinning any music. It's like playing a tune from a closed app in the background, except in Facebook's case it's not actually doing anything.

Of course, Facebook hasn't just come clean about the issue but timed the honesty with the release of a new version of the app. Grant reveals that it doesn't solve the issue completely but should be the first step in improving the situation.

We'll take any little improvement in battery life we can get.

#4 Own The Conversation

Ask The Big Question: So, if we're only picking this up because of the latest iOS's power gauging features, how long has it been going on for?

Disrupt Your Feed: As if you really needed another reason to steer clear of Facebook.

Drop This Fact: Over half a billion users now access Facebook exclusively through mobile devices.

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