Facebook is one of the biggest battery draining offenders on the Google Play Store, and that’s just one of the app’s many problems. Facebook’s history with Android, and smartphone users in general is spotty at best. From poor app performance, to forcing users into psychological experiments; there’s more than three laundry list’s worth of issues.
Some of these issues, like the battery draining, have their fixes. However, it’s almost impossible to get around the biggest issue, which is the official app itself! If you still want to use the official Facebook app, here are some ways to work around the app’s biggest problems to date.
1. Facebook Uses More of Your Phone’s Battery Than Anything Else
Because of Facebook’s nature, gigantic list of features, and need to always stay connected, it chews up your battery faster than almost any other app on the market. It doesn’t make any sense that just browsing social media puts more strain on your phone than a new game, right?
It at least doesn’t at first, but since Facebook is constantly connected to your mobile data, constantly updating, constantly sending data back and forth, and constantly connecting to others; it really starts to add up quickly.
How Do I Fix This?
The quickest solution is to stop using the app, but that just creates a new problem, doesn’t it? If you want to still use the official Facebook app, and cut down on its battery munching habits; you have a few options at your disposal.
Step 1: One thing that Facebook loves to do is keep you connected to send you notifications. If you disable these, you’ll be able to squeeze a little more battery life out of your phone during the day.
The way to do this changes depending on your version of Android, but if you don’t want to mess with settings; you can uninstall and reinstall the app to get a second chance at disabling notifications from the start.
For everyone else, these settings will be under Settings > Apps > Facebook.
Step 2: This is admittedly not just a great way to hide your battery power from Facebook, but from the rest of your phone at the same time. If you cut off all mobile data and Wi-Fi, or switch into Airplane Mode; you’ll stop any background communication, not just with Facebook, but with anything.
The immediately apparent downside to this is that your phone is almost useless. If you aren’t expecting a call, message, or an important email; this might do the trick.
Step 3: If you want to restrict an app’s background data, but don’t want to disconnect your phone completely to do it; go to your Data usage settings. You can find them by going to Settings > Data usage under Wireless & Networks, or by tapping your currently connected data network.
Once there, you can see a breakdown of all of your apps and their data usage this month. On this list, select Facebook, and then scroll all the way down until you see the Restrict app background data button. Toggle the switch, or tap the button, and you’re good to go.
Step 4: I mentioned this before, halfway as a joke, but if you aren’t completely committed to the official Facebook app; I’d ditch it for the mobile site instead. The two are strikingly similar, but as a bonus, the mobile site doesn’t take up nearly as much battery or data.
2. Other Apps Running Slower After Facebook Was Installed
This problem is an odd one no matter what way you slice it. Can the official Facebook app really make other apps on your device run slower? As strange as it is to say, it does, and it’s been proven.
Even while you aren’t using it, Facebook is still active, and hogging as many resources as it possibly can. Does the app really need as many resources as it takes in? Probably not, but that isn’t going to stop it. If Facebook is slowing down everything around it, what can you do about it?
How Do I Fix This?
This isn’t the first time I’ve mentioned this, and it won’t be the last. The easiest way to deal with the slowdown is to just uninstall the app and try another one, or the mobile site. If you don’t want to take the time to move to a new app, or don’t want to leave the old one behind; there’s one more thing you can try.
Step 1: I mentioned this when dealing with battery problems, but it works here just as well. If you restrict Facebook’s background data, you’ll cut down on some of its power hungry background processes.
Please refer to Step 3 of Problem 1 to learn how.
Step 2: Unfortunately, other than Step 1 above, the only other option possible is to uninstall the app. Fortunately, there are plenty of Facebook app alternatives, and the mobile site works just as well as the app without half of the problems.
3. Facebook Crashes Randomly
With any program, there are a multitude of reasons for a crash. This isn’t any different with Facebook, and sometimes it might even be intentional. If you want to troubleshoot a crash, there’s a long list of ways to go about it.
How Do I Fix This?
This is going to be a long list, but each crash test is short and sweet.
Step 1: First off, the tried and true method for every troubleshooting problem in existence: turning it on and off again.
Power your device down completely, and then wait a few minutes. After some time has passed, turn it back on, and then hope for the best.
Step 2: If turning it on and off again didn’t help, check to see if your app is currently up to date. Personally, I like keeping my apps outdated until I’m forced into an update, so I’ll often forget that an update can fix a problem I have.
If this doesn’t do the trick, there’s still more to attempt.
Step 3: If your app is up to date, try uninstalling it, and then reinstalling it as soon as possible. If an install error is why your app keeps crashing, this will take care of it in just a few minutes.
Step 4: Does your app crash while on Wi-Fi, or mobile data? If you’re crashing on Wi-Fi, try disconnecting from your network, and then reconnecting.
Alternatively, if you have the mobile bandwidth to spare, try using the app on mobile data for a while and take note of any differences.
Step 5: If you’re crashing on mobile data constantly, switch your device into Airplane Mode, wait a few minutes, and then switch it off again. This doesn’t always do the trick, but it’s worth a shot.
Step 6: When’s the last time you’ve cleared your Facebook cache? If your answer is “Facebook has a cache?” then it’s time to take a look at it. Go to Settings > Apps > Facebook and then scroll down to the Clear cache button.
Tap it, confirm your decision, and enjoy a little more free space, and hopefully less crashes.
Step 7: You’re probably sick of hearing it by now, but one of the easiest ways to make sure the Facebook app never crashes again, is to get rid of it. The mobile site for Facebook is free, easy to use, and won’t cause you any trouble.
4. Facebook is Updating Every Day Even When There are No Significant Changes
This sounds like a pretty big problem, especially for users with limited data plans, but this is actually intentional on Facebook’s part. Your app will update every day if you are in the Facebook Beta Tester program.
How Do I Fix This?
There are only two ways to fix this: uninstall the app, or leave the program. Turning off automatic updates in Google Play does not stop the beta tester program from updating your Facebook app at least once a day.
Step 1: Follow this link to cancel your beta tester program membership. Once cancelled, your constant updates will stop. If your app is still being updated on a daily basis after cancelling, please uninstall, and then reinstall your app to stop the updates.
5. Facebook Won’t Connect After an Update
Having trouble logging in, or loading Facebook at all after an update? You’re probably not alone, and unfortunately, there are only a few things you can do about it. The reasons for this vary, and it can even be Facebook itself, disconnecting you for an extended period of time.
How Do I Fix This?
There are only a few ways to get around this issue, and most of them involve ditching the official Facebook app in favor of an easier and reliable alternative.
Step 1: If you’re willing to try third party sites, you can download an older version of the Facebook app to restore your connectivity.
However, this means you need to put your trust in app marketplaces other than Google Play.
Be careful, installing unknown APKs can damage your device.
Step 2: Sadly, if you aren’t willing to download an older version of the app, or download an entirely new one; you’re stuck waiting around until another update fixes the problem for you. Otherwise, you can try the mobile site in the meantime.
Step 3: While I’m still talking about Facebook’s mobile site; it’s worth migrating to if you still have issues with the Facebook app, but don’t want to download a third party one.
What About Problems That Aren’t Listed Here?
When it comes down to it, the official Facebook app is a mess of little problems tightly wound together, making one big issue. The five issues above are the biggest problems with the official Facebook app, and the ones that are fixable while still keeping the same app on your phone.
If you have more than these five problems, or a mixture of little problems that you don’t see here; I urge you to uninstall the official app, and try a third-party one.
Third Party Facebook Recommendations
There are more than a few good, third-party Facebook apps available, so I’m going to run down a few of them quickly.
1. Metal for Facebook & Twitter
If you have a bone to pick with Twitter’s official app like I do, Metal is a two for one combo that’s lightweight, and easy to use.
The app acts as a metal shell that wraps around the mobile version of the two sites, and improves the interface without sacrificing extra battery power or performance. There’s a pro version available for $1.69, but the free version is good enough if you don’t want to spend money.
Metal for Facebook & Twitter
2. Facebook Lite
If Facebook has put on too much weight lately, and you want to save them the embarrassment of bringing it up, download Facebook Lite instead. It’s thinner, cleaner, and it may give its bigger version a hint to take a jog every once in awhile.
3. Mini for Facebook – Mini FB
If you haven’t caught the theme here already, minimalism is king. The less stress Facebook puts on your device, the more battery you have the for the rest of your day, and that makes social media browsing almost worry free.
Mini for Facebook does exactly what it sets out to do; it takes everything great about Facebook, shrinks it down, and gives you more time to enjoy it in the process. Mini may not be as minimalist as Facebook Lite, but still keeps your device out of the red zone more than the official Facebook app.
Mini for Facebook – Mini FB
The official Facebook app is a complete and total mess, but despite that, you can still tweak it to make it bearable. However, that doesn’t stop me from wholeheartedly recommending you either switch to the mobile site, or use a third-party app instead. If you’re going to spend a good chunk of your day on Facebook, you should be able to without needing a spare battery.
How do you browse Facebook on Android? Do you use the official app, the mobile site, or a third-party app? Let us know in the comments below what you use, and if you have any problems with it!