360 Security is a very popular app in the Google Play Store with over 100 million downloads. Now there is a Lite version that aims to be smaller and lighter on resources. Is it worth it?
This Lite version is aimed at phones and tablets with less than 1GB of memory and limited storage space – it is a lightweight 4MB download and 16MB when installed. It is also designed to use as little power as possible.
It can be used on any phone, not just budget models with limited specifications, and the benefits of small storage requirements, low memory usage and low battery usage benefit everyone.
360 Security Lite has three functions and as the name suggests, it is an antivirus utility that scans the Android phone or tablet for malware and removes it. There are three tabs in the app and swiping to the third one displays a large Scan button in the centre of the screen. Down below is a message stating whether the virus definitions are up to date, and at the bottom are three indicators showing the status of payment protection, privacy protection and malware protection.
Tap the Scan button and the app looks for malware. There was none on the test phone, but presumably it will offer to remove any that is found. Apps are scanned as they are installed and there is real-time protection.
The second tab is Clean and 360 Security Lite is a clean-up tool that scans the device for junk files that are not necessary to the system and presents them in a list. You can browse the list and select or deselect items, then delete the selected ones to free up storage space on the device.
Many files that it cleans are caches and these reappear when apps are run, so the space gains are temporary rather than permanent. However, it does find a few left-overs from apps that have been removed and these can be deleted along with the caches.
The Boost tab aims to boost the performance and battery life of the Android phone or tablet. It identifies apps that are consuming memory and which can be closed, and it highlights apps that are using too much power., so they can also be closed.
You can simply tap the big Boost button in the middle of the screen, or you can view the memory-consuming apps and battery-draining apps and individually select them. These are then shut down to boost memory and battery life.
Apps can be whitelisted to protect them from being boosted (closed) and this is a useful feature.
Notifications can be enabled to remind you to clean up, in case you forget. It alerts you when it thinks the device needs a boost, such as when memory usage is high. The lock screen and the notifications pull-down show a toolbar with useful functions, such as boost buttons, alarms, and recently used apps.
I like lightweight apps that do not consume too much memory, storage and battery power. It is worthwhile getting even if you have a high specification phone. I tried it on a Samsung Galaxy S6 and it worked fine. It tends to produce low memory warnings too easily and I suspect that the phone is not really short of memory.
It is probably Android just taking advantage of the memory that is available. Unused memory is a waste, so Android puts it to use, which makes it seem like there isn’t much left.
I have used antivirus software on Android phones before and never found anything. 360 Security Lite hasn’t found anything either. Malware does not appear to be common, at least not in Google Play Store apps, but it is reassuring to have the app monitoring the system though.
360 Security Lite is a useful app. It is free and you will see an advert after a boost, cleanup or malware scan, but this is fair enough and the ads do not get in the way. It is another great app from 360 Mobile Security Ltd.
Title: 360 Security Lite
Developer: 360 Mobile Security Ltd
Android: 2.2 and up
Verdict: Recommended for cleaning, battery saving and malware protection.
- Written by Roland Waddilove
- Created: 06 October 2015