Android has many great features, but also a few irritations too and one of these is apps that run in the background. The more apps you install, the more that hide in the background. There they occupy memory and consume processing power and suck the life out of the battery. What can you do?
Stopping apps that are running is one way, but preventing them from auto-starting in the first place is another. 360 Security is a free multi-function utility for Android powered phones and it can do both. It is a bit odd in the way that it works and non-obvious, so let’s take a tour of the facilities.
Start the 360 Security app and it displays a screen like this. It shows the amount of memory used, apps that are running and battery power remaining. Tap the Boost button and it closes down unnecessary apps running in the background and this makes a lot of extra memory free.
Afterwards, down at the bottom of the screen is Autostart Manager and this is used to prevent apps from automatically starting.
Tap it, and it displays a list of apps that are running that can be stopped. I prefer to ignore the Stop all button at the bottom and select the ones I want to stop manually.
Tapping an app displays the conditions under which an app will automatically start. Some do not automatically start and nothing is displayed, but take a look at this one, Weather Live.
It auto starts after startup, changing networks, when data is changed, when the time is set, and when connecting the power cable. Is it any wonder that some apps seem to come back five minutes after you have forcibly quit them?
Tap the Stop button and the Android system screen appears from the Settings. Tap the Force Stop button and the app will be stopped. Tap the Back button on the phone and you are then returned to 360 Security.
Down at the bottom of the screen is a Confirm button and tapping this confirms that you do not want the app to auto-start.
360 Security is not perfect and it cannot stop everything. You only have to look at the number of ways apps can auto-start to see the problem. However, it does as good a job as other apps that prevent apps running in the background, and it has several other good features too.
Hopefully your phone will now run more smoothly with more memory and the battery power will last longer.
- Written by Roland Waddilove
- Created: 17 February 2015