4 Quick Tips to Spring Clean Your Phone

With spring just around the corner, and spring cleaning and decluttering well underway, it’s time to turn our attention to one item that probably needs the most cleaning but often gets overlooked: our trusty smartphones. A study by researchers at the University of Arizona showed that cellphones carry 10 times more bacteria than the average toilet! And an accumulation of digital clutter means they may be working less than efficiently, too. Here are four quick tips to effectively clean and declutter your smartphone.

Spring Clean Your Smartphone

Wipe it Down

Before you deal with the digital clutter on your device, get rid of germs by giving it a good wipe down. In order to avoid damaging your phone, clean your screen with a micro-fibre cloth and a non-drip gel. Give the phone a quick spritz with the gel and rub it gently to avoid scratching the screen. Don’t forget to also wipe the camera lens. 

This may also be a good time to freshen up your phone case.

Back it Up

Before embarking on any kind of digital cleaning mission, it’s best to back up your device first. If you have an iPhone, select your Settings. Click on your Name and then iCloud. Select iCloud Backup and click Back up Now. To back up an Android phone on the Google cloud, follow these instructions.

Purge Old Apps

Take a look through your apps. You may find you actually only use a few of them regularly. If you have an iPhone you can easily check how much you’re using your apps. Click on Settings, General, and iPhone Storage. There you’ll see a list of your apps and exactly how much storage they’re taking up and when they were last used. This is a pretty quick and easy way to offload old, unused apps. The apps you use daily should be on the first page of your phone. Everything else can be put into folders. So, for example, all your hotel and airline apps would go into a folder marked Travel and your Candy Crush and Words with Friends apps can be put into a Games folder.

Delete Old Music, Photos, Contacts, and Texts

It’s really tempting to never delete anything from your phone because, hey, you never know when you may need it! The reality, though, is that music and photos take up a lot of space on your device. And after you’ve played Lady Gaga’s Shallow on repeat for two straight weeks, you might just be done with it for awhile.

After you’ve backed up your phone, consider deleting older music, any blurry photos you’re needlessly saving, and while you’re at it, take a look through your contacts and texts. You don’t need those outdated message threads cluttering up your phone any more than you need those old texts from your ex. Delete, delete, delete.

We know it’s hard to let go of things, and just as you agonize over letting go of old books, clothes, or appliances, it’s just as nerve-wracking to delete digital clutter from your phone. But you’ll feel lighter for it, and so will your trusty phone.

If you have any questions about optimizing your technology, our in-store technology experts are always happy to help.

5 Tips to Optimize the Performance of Your Android Phone

Do you really need a new Android phone? Maybe not

If you watch TV or listen to the radio you know there is always a new Android phone being touted as the latest, greatest device that you absolutely must have. However tempting it may be to trade in your old model for a new one, it’s not always realistic, especially if your phone isn’t all that old or you just aren’t ready for a new phone quite yet.

But if your current model isn’t performing like it used to, before you head into your local phone dealer, first consider these five tips to improve the performance of your Android phone.

1. Clear Your Cached Data

There may be some apps you use a lot, such as e-mail, Instagram, and Twitter, but others you use less frequently, like the ones you use to book travel or search job postings. To speed up your Android, you can remove cached data from apps you use less often. Clearing the old data not only improves the speed of your phone but it can also help prevent crashing and freezing of the apps as well. Go to the Device Storage page in your Settings. Look for a Cached Data entry and tap it. You’ll see an option to clear out your cached data.

2. Update Your Android Phone

Provided you aren’t using an old model, try updating your Android OS to the latest version. Not only will you improve the phone’s performance, but you’ll also access new features and security fixes. The process for updating will vary depending on your carrier and device.

3. Remove Unused Apps and Media

Remove unused apps to improve your Android's performance

Photo by Stephen Frank on Unsplash

Like most anything in life, too much of a good thing isn’t always…well, good! If your Android is overloaded with apps and data, it will eventually slow down. First, go through your media files and remove old photos and music, and then check your apps to see which ones aren’t being used. To remove seldom-used apps on a standard Android, follow the following steps:

  • Click the Menu button
  • Tap on Settings, then Applications and then Manage applications
  • Click the app you want to delete and then click Uninstall
  • If there is no Uninstall button, it’s a system app and it can’t be deleted

4. Keep Your Phone Battery Charged

Keep your Android fully charged for optimal performance

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Your phone will automatically slow down as the battery ages. To avoid this, keep your battery charged with the following tips:

  • Carry a portable charger for when you can’t plug your phone into an electrical outlet.
  • Turn off your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth when they’re not in use – your phone won’t be constantly searching for a connection in the background.
  • Completely shut down all apps you aren’t using.

5. When All Else Fails, Restart Your Phone

Occasionally you may need to reboot your Android to restore optimal performance. After you’ve deleted unused media and apps and updated to the latest version, if you’re still finding your phone sluggish it may be time to reboot it. You can do a soft restart or a hard restart. A soft restart means powering down your phone and re-starting it. A hard restart will delete certain data from your phone as this function is essentially a factory reset. This is a more complex reboot and shouldn’t be attempted without weighing the pros and cons of losing some of your data. Here’s a step-by-step guide to Android reboots and restarts with more instructions.

Hopefully these tips will fix your performance issues, but if none of these steps work for you, then it may be time to admit that you need a new phone after all. For all things Android, visit London Drugs and speak to our mobile phone experts about all your cellphone needs.