With the mobile phone packing more and more sophisticated features these days, it’s little wonder why this gadget has become such an important tool in everyday life. But more often than not, I’ve heard friends complaining about their laggy phones after using them for some time.

While it’s normal to find your phone running at slower speeds as time passes by, there’s still hope to fix the lag issue before you buy a new one. Here are some easy tips and tricks to help fix speed issues in your phone. Best of all, you don’t need to be tech-savvy to solve this problem!

Android and iOS – the differences

I am sure most people know that Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS are operating systems (OS) used primarily in mobile technology. While both OSes share many features, there are some differences. Below is a comparison chart to give you a clearer picture of the differences between these 2 market-leading OSes:

Comparison ofAndroidiOS
Device selection Wide range of Android devices available at varying price points, sizes and hardware capabilities Only available on Apple devices, which tend to be more costly than equivalent hardware using Android
App store Google Play with over 1 million apps. Other app stores like Amazon and Getjar also distribute Android apps. (unconfirmed ".APKs") Apple app store with over 1 million apps
File ManagerAvailableNot available
Security Varies with different Android phone manufacturers as many of them tend to lag behind in pushing out software patches. Generally more secured than Android as most users don’t go outside the Play Store for apps. Besides, Apple's software updates support older iOS devices too.
Administrator access Complete control and access availableComplete control and access not available
WidgetsAvailableNot available, except in Notification Centre
CustomizabilityHigh, can change almost everythingLimited unless jailbroken
Source modelOpen source, similar to a personal computer (PC)Closed, with some open-source components

Tip #1: Do you have the latest version?

When purchasing a phone, are you aware whether it is on the latest OS version? The latest version of iOS is 12.1.4, while the latest Android version is 9.0 Pie. To find out the current OS version running on your phone, follow the steps below:


   1. Locate and open the Settings app.
   2. Scroll down the Settings screen and look for “System” or “About phone” option.
   3. Search for the “Software info” to find the “Android version”.

NB: The exact path to find the Android version may differ slightly from phone to phone. The above steps apply to the LG Android phone.

   1. Locate and open the Settings app.
   2. Tap “General”.
  3. Tap “About”.

4. Note the current iOS version listed next to the word “Version”.

Tip #2: Update your apps

In case you are wondering why you need to check your phone’s software version, this is because the latest version often includes critical patches for device security and efficiency. Likewise, ensure the apps stored on your phone are updated help to enhance security and speed up the device.

To add, there is good news for iOS users. Apple offers software upgrades to all devices with the hardware capability of handling the new software. Therefore, as long as your iPhone isn’t more than 3 years old, its software and apps are kept updated.

person holding white Google Android smartphone
Image Credit: Jakob Owens on Unsplash

On the other hand, apart from Pixel phones (Google handles their updates directly), all other Android phone updates are handled by respective phone manufacturers. That means whether your phone can be updated to the latest OS version is dependent on the manufacturer.

Nonetheless, it is possible to ensure all the apps on your phone are updated, simply by tapping on “Auto-update apps” when you go to “Menu Settings” on the Google Play Store app. Watch this quick 2-minute video for how to do it!


Tip #3: Install a custom ROM

This tip applies if you have a non-Pixel phone that doesn’t allow you to receive the latest version of Android. Installing a custom ROM may be the solution, as it lets you install mods built by the community to provide better performance.

However, do it only if you are familiar with installing a custom ROM or have an old spare device to play with. There is a risk of damaging your phone if you aren’t careful. But if you are really confident of your skills, installing a custom version of Android can really help make your phone run faster.

Tip #4: Clear the cache

Image credit: BagoGames | Flickr

Cached data is information your apps store to help them boot up faster so images from a website you visit often may be cached on your browser so loading of the page speeds up. On the other hand, the cache may also take up unnecessary space and have a negative impact on your phone’s speed. Thus, it is good practice to remove cached data of individual apps on your phone.

Get your phone to speed up quickly by watching these videos:

Tip #5: Disable animations

While animations on the phone make your experience more visually appealing and unique, they also appear to slow down your phone. Fortunately, such aesthetically pleasing features can be disabled without much work to get it done. Just check out these videos to learn how to disable animations on both Android and iOS:

Tip #6: GPU rendering

The GPU is the Graphics Processing Unit which handles the graphical information. Simply put, it manages the visuals on your screen. Hence, by enabling GPU rendering on your phone it frees up the phones system for more important system tasks.

In this way, both CPU and GPU can function more efficiently! This method works if you have an Android phone, and here’s a detailed step-by-step guide you can follow!

1. Go to Settings and scroll all the way down to the bottom.
NB: If you see an entry called Developer options, tap on it and skip right to step 5.

2. If you can’t find this option, tap on About phone and look for an entry called Build Number.

3. Tap on Build number 7 times until you see the message “You are now a developer“.

4. Return to Settings, scroll down and you should be able to see a new option called Developer options. Tap on it.

5. Scroll down to the Hardware accelerated rendering and enable Force GPU rendering.

Tip #7: Clear the clutter on your phone

selective focus photography of person taking picture of brown food
Image Credit: Callie Morgan on Unsplash

Last but not least, it is common to find your phone installed with unnecessary apps, images, messages and music. As more time goes by, these things take up lots of space on the phone. It’s obvious the space could be better used only for things that you need, for optimal performance.

Regular housekeeping of your phone is essential to reduce the burden on the hardware. Besides, those apps you rarely use may be running constantly in the background. This drains your battery and may consume your mobile data in the process. So get rid of the clutter to speed up your phone now!

Save yourself some money investing in a brand new phone with the above quick and cost-free ways to make your phone run faster. Furthermore, you don’t need to be a techie to fix that laggy phone. Live life the smarter way!

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*Feature Image credit: Unsplash.com

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