Researchers at Perdue University have created a new software called HUSH that helps extend the life of Android devices by preventing battery drain caused by apps. How big is this problem? Researchers found that almost fifty percent of the device’s battery drain was caused by apps running in the background, and that almost thirty percent of that drain occurred even while the screen is asleep. The new software, which Perdue has made available for free, reduces that sleep-time drain by half.
What’s behind the drain? Let’s say your Candy Crush app wakes up your phone to alert you that you have more lives available now. Some apps that behave this way don’t let the phone go back to sleep due to bugs in the way they’re written, meaning a single alert can lead to a dead phone when you need it. HUSH puts the phone back to sleep the way you had it, despite any popup alerts that come in. Developers on the project also believe this function will not only keep your battery more fully charged when you need it for day to day use, but that it can also extend the overall life of the battery by not putting as much wear on it.
HUSH also works by noting which installed apps the user doesn’t open very often–if at all–and makes note of those apps. Once it’s been determined that the user doesn’t really take advantage of them, HUSH will shut off the activity in that app that causes battery drain. It doesn’t affect your ability to use the app when you choose to do so, it just halts the functions that eat your power.
While the software was only tested out on certain models of Samsung Galaxy phones, more than two thousand units were tested in 61 countries, which should give a wide spectrum of capability in things like wifi connectivity and battery drain as the phone attempts to connect.