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Why does my phone get sluggish?

Discussion in 'Android Lounge' started by jungleexplorer, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    Mine has been a long journey with my i727 Skyrocket. When I first got it, it worked pretty good and I was satisfied with it. Then it started to become sluggish and I started to try and fix things. I have the done rooting thing, the getting rid of bloatware thing, the trying out the different roms thing (supernexus, cyanogenmod, etc.) and many other things. None of those fixed anything, but simply made things worse.

    After months of trying everything that was suggested to me on this forum with bad results, I finally just restored my phone back to the original state from a nandroid backup I had made before starting this journey. I then performed a factory reset and Voala! My phone was back to normal. It worked like it did the day I took it out of the box. Of course the work begins getting all my needed business apps installed (i.e. camscanner, acar, ect.) and relogging back into all my accounts and setting up my many emails accounts.

    After all that is done, my phone works pretty good for a while, and then it starts to slowly get sluggish. The slow decay continues no matter what I do (over months) to the point of where I cannot even type sometimes because it takes 5 or 6 seconds for each keystroke to appear, and sometimes takes minutes to launch a single app like Google Maps.

    I know the ultimate solution is to do another factory reset, but it takes a lot of work to get my phone all set up again. I am just wondering why this happens? It has a Microsoft Windows feel to it, because computers always work great right after a fresh install of windows, but become sluggish and glitchy after a while no matter what you do.

    There has to be a reason why this occurs.
     

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  2. Crashdamage

    Crashdamage Android Expert
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    I've used Android since v1.0 and the original G1. I've never needed to do a factory reset due to performance, only when passing a phone on to a new owner.

    Probably you are installing a buggy app(s), using a lot of widgets - something like that is using a lot of CPU cycles or hogging RAM without releasing it properly SS needed. Install System Panel or a similar monitoring app and see if you can determine the cause of the problem.
     
  3. bjacks12

    bjacks12 Android Expert
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    One reason is that the S2 is only up to Android 4.1.

    TRIM support didn't arrive until 4.3.
     
  4. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    I only install top rated apps. I have installed not a single game. The apps I install are Cammscanner, acar, google maps, waze, trip avidor, Amazon, current caller ID, Chrome, facebook, flashlight, and Stocks. That is it. The rest came with the stock rom on the phone which is: Android 4.1.2, Baseband I727UCMC1. As stated before, I have tried several other roms on this phone and this is the only one that is even remotely stable. The rest are pure junk on this phone and render it almost unusable. I do go in a disable all the att bloatware to free up space.

    As I stated before, it runs fine at first with all the apps I install listed above, but even though I make no further changes to it, it slowly gets more sluggish with time. I hear everyone say that the next rom or android update will fix everything, but I have never found that to be the case. Most updates break as much as they fix or get rid as many features as they add. I have been told this hundreds of times on hear and I have followed that rabbit trail of new roms and found it to be a dead end and more harmful then good.
     
  5. Crashdamage

    Crashdamage Android Expert
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    Well, whatever the problem is, the solution is not to waste time swapping ROMs. IOW, Android is not the problem. You need to put your efforts into determining what actually is. I can't tell you that, you'll have to diagnose it yourself.
     
  6. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    I should say this here, that I have experienced this problem on every android device I have ever used, regardless of android version. So far I have not held an android device that I can say that operated smoothly in my hands, whether mine or somebody else's.

    They have problems with sluggishness occurring over time.
     
  7. bjacks12

    bjacks12 Android Expert
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    My Nexus 4 has never lagged
     
  8. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    That's great to hear. Maybe things are actually getting better. I will only know when I get a new device and that won't happen until I suffer a hardware failure. Unlike most lemmings, I don't follow the crowd. I think it is stupid to buy new hardware to fix a software problem. My i727 has all the hardware features I want and will ever need, I just need it to work smoothly, and from what I am getting from everyone here is that the only way to do that is to do a factory reset. If that is the way it has to be, then that is what I will have to do.
     
  9. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    Before you go and factory reset, you might want to consider clearing out the caches to see if that's where your bottleneck is. Since this slowdown happens over time, independent of rom/launchers, I have to think that it's a dwindling RAM issue with one or a combination of apps you use..

    Now, while i never had the glacial slowdown you describe on my i777, i did see some lag and stuttering on the i897 (Captivate).
     
  10. bjacks12

    bjacks12 Android Expert
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    I also had insane lag on the i897. Installing CM 11(Kitkat) on it helped quite a bit, but still couldn't overcome the fact that it has 512 MB of RAM and an old chip.

    OP, I am with you 100% on your sentiments about hardware. I come from a mentality that won't let me replace something that still works fine. I won't let myself buy the new Nexus 6 or Nexus 9 because my Nexus 4 and Kindle Fire still work. I only bought my 4 last summer, so it has just over a year on it. It was purchased to replace my i897 after a supposed hardware failure(which later fixed itself somehow, so now it's backup).

    I think within the constraints of the hardware and the OS version, you may be limited to clearing the cache and the occasional factory reset. I can't comment on the apps you listed because I don't have experience with all of them.
     
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  11. Slug

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    That's it in a nutshell. The S2 range dates from Android 2.3.x, when the internal storage was hard-partitioned.
     
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  12. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    I agree with you that it is a ram management issue. I have maintained this stance since the beginning, and you were there when I first came here with this same issue on this same phone last year. You also know how heated that debate became too. You were also there over the whole journey I took through all the different roms and other things I tried, and all the problems all those things caused on my phone before I eventually ended up going back to the stock rom. There is no question that the slowdown is caused by androids inability to properly manage the ram space. The question is not what is causing the problem, the question is why? Why is it that my phone works good right after a factory reset and even after I install all my apps, and then after months it starts to slow down no matter what I do?

    Following your suggestion I installed the All-In-One Tollbox and did a system clean up. I hate doing this because in the past it has caused system instability that forces me to do a factory reset in the end. Sure enough, the app crashed during the clean up and I had to do a hard reboot my phone (hold the power button in for 5 seconds) and then my phone crashed again when I tried to launch the camera, forcing another hard reboot.

    After a couple hard reboots, it seem to be doing a little better now. The All-In-One Toolbox app has the option of disabling startup apps, so I gave that a try. There has been a slight improvement in performance, but I don't know if it because of the clean up and disabling some startups, or just the reboots, which always improve performance for a short while. We will see how it runs over the next few days.
     
  13. mojosodope

    mojosodope Android Enthusiast
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    Time for a new phone
     
  14. lunatic59

    lunatic59 Moderati ergo sum
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    And we continue to agree to disagree. While we seem to have a consensus on reasons, I cannot lay the blame at the feet of Android.

    But Android is properly managing the RAM space for your device and OS version. As Slug pointed out, the phone was originally released with Android OS, v2.3.5 (Gingerbread), upgradable to v4.1.2 (Jelly Bean). The problem is that Gingerbread had hard partitioned volumes for RAM and system and for an in-place upgrade (rather than a full firmware flash) it had to maintain those partitions, or you'd have a lot of angry customers with data that was vaporized. Even though Android 4.1 and later virtualizes the volumes to dynamically allocate space as needed, this won't happen with the i727.

    It's not that your phone stops working, but works poorly. Android is doing the best it can with the resources at it's disposal. Think of it this way ... (sorry, another tiresome car analogy) ... you have a Honda Civic that can pull a small u-haul trailer easily while empty. Every day you put a brick in the trailer and take it someplace. Ideally once the brick is gone, the trailer is again empty, but the brick leaves behind enough dust and chips that eventually the trailer fills up. You have to reach over a pile of debris to put the brick in and take the brick out and the extra weight degrades the performance of your car.

    Now, you can just drop the old trailer and get a new one (factory reset) or you can shovel out the debris (empty the caches), but as long as you keep carrying bricks, you'll keep having this problem. You could switch from hauling bricks to hauling marshmallows (use different apps) or you could get a pickup truck (new phone) that has enough power and space to handle brick, dust and chips.

    As for the All-in-one toolbox, I can't say that I recommend using that given your experience with it, especially since it really doesn't localize the problem.

    Here's what I'd do (actually, I'd buy a new phone at this point, but we've already had that discussion :) ) I would dump the toolbox and used Android's application manager to dump the app caches one by one until I found which apps were bogging the system down. If that didn't help enough, then I'd boot into recovery and wipe the cache partition (system cache). If that was the source of the problem, then you've got an app that's not cleaning up after itself and we can try and look into that further.

    And, I'm sorry if you've said this someplace else, but I can't find it ... you stated your phone becomes sluggish over time. How long a time are we talking here? Days? Weeks? Months?
     
  15. bjacks12

    bjacks12 Android Expert
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    Already been covered.
     
  16. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    Great analogies! This statement here that you made ("The problem is that Gingerbread had hard partitioned volumes for RAM and system and for an in-place upgrade "), is new information to me. I don't fully understand it, but I think it makes sense. I think I have run into this problem before on my Nec Terrain, even though it has the same amount of ram as my i727, after installing a few apps on it I ran out of "APP" space. After some research I saw that the Terrain had a dedicated app space that was over 3/4 consumed with stock apps from the factory, leaving less then 200Mb for user apps. The app space was hard and no matter how much storage I had nothing could extend it. I have never had this problem on my i727, but I suspected that even though I never get the "Not enough space to install app" error on i727, there is a point at which the hard space allocated for apps is exceeded and this causes a system slow down, in much the same way as Windows Virtual Memory function would allow a user to exceed the system ram by using hard disk space as virtual ram, but at the cost of a much slower speed.
     
  17. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Android Expert
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    Despite it being 'top rated' in Google Play (i think that is rated by download count, not successful reviews) the Facebook app is perhaps the worst at eating into your resources and causing 90% of the lag in today's devices. uninstalling it and using Chrome to browse the mobile site or using a more polished app such as Friendcaster or Paper seems to be a better option.
     
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  18. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    I have heard that facebook is a recourse hog and I believe it. I just ahve not found a suitable alternative. I have tried several but have found them clumsy, glitchy and limited. I have not tried friendcaster yet though. I will look at it.
     
  19. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood
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    My norm is to just use the mobile Facebook site from the browser.

    The app isn't too bad though when you don't allow it to sync or notify. Its mainly my issue with being forced to use the messenger app that I use the browser
     
  20. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    True. But on my phone, browsers are the slowest functioning app. The stock browser is very slow and chrome is not much better. I have the most problem with browsers then any other app. Also accessing the mobile site requires more data and this can be really slow if you are not connected to wifi and live in areas with slow data speeds.
     
  21. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Android Expert
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    I've actually had Facebook's app devouring my data allowance due to it constantly syncing and notifying me every other second, while a web browser would only use data when you reload the page or post something. I uninstalled it due to the data use and very unnecessary permissions, many of which cause wake locks that eat into my battery--and battery life is far more important to me than fluid UI.

    Some Google apps (especially ones you might never use) also tend to do things like use resources when they shouldn't, either using the GPS off/on, syncing with Google, or syncing your own Google account (Google Play Store is set to check for and install updates automatically, this can eat data and cause stutters, and it's set to update at any time by default, be it on data or on wifi). simply changing the settings of each individual app (turning off Auto-Update on Google Play Store) or even disabling certain apps (disable Google Play Music, Google+ or Hangouts if you don't want them, and they won't start up at all).

    Ive noticed more performance gains by disabling unwanted or unneeded Google apps in addition to disabling undesired features (i don't need every single app at the most current version)
     
  22. Rxpert83

    Rxpert83 Dr. Feelgood
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    You can go into the Facebook app settings and tell it not to sync, notify, or use your location. It uses hardly any battery after you do that. :thumbup:
     
  23. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Android Expert
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    but then it's quite pointless. i get essentially the same thing i get when i use Chrome to browse the site, but with Chrome i don't eat up a ton of storage space with an app. so i just uninstalled the app.

    Also, Chrome using the mobile site doesn't force me to use two apps to do the same thing. with Facebook's app, i have to also install a different app to enable messaging--which was (my preference) better being in-built to Facebook. so that's two apps to do the job of one. the website on desktop and the mobile site on Chrome allows me to do both in one app.
     
  24. jungleexplorer

    jungleexplorer Android Enthusiast
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    Very true, but I was referring to data usage while actually actively using facebook. I am not worried too much about data consumption. I have 10 gigs of data and I almost never use more the 2 gigs a month. Speed when I need it is more important to me. It takes 10 times longer for me to do something on facebook using a browsers, then it does using an app. And like a said, browsers are the heaviest hitters when it comes to resource usage on my phone. They take forever to launch and typing is painfully slow in a browser for me. No other apps behaves as badly on my phone as browsers do. Well, with the exception of Google maps, which is the greatest offender of all, but is the best navigation map for accuracy and voice commands out there.
     
  25. bjacks12

    bjacks12 Android Expert
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    Do you have Google Now enabled? I've never measured side by side, but I hear that it uses a lot of resources. If you don't need/use it, you should try disabling it.
     

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