I’ve seen tons of recent complaints about the Facebook app wreaking havoc on iPhone battery life. Unfortunately, this isn’t breaking news and seems to re-surface every couple of months. Not only does Facebook use tons of battery when left unchecked, it can also take up insane amounts of storage space on your iPhone.
This is exactly why I never let Facebook have permission to access, well almost anything, on my iPhone. Here are some iPhone battery tips I’d recommend giving a try if you’re having issues:
1. Turn OFF Facebook background app refresh & location services
Two things I never give Facebook access to are background app refresh or location services. With these on, Facebook can refresh and do all kinds of crazy things in the background. When I had these enabled, my battery life was horrendous. If you don’t do anything else but disable these two things, you’ll already be in much better shape:
- Launch the Settings app and tap on Facebook.
- Tap on Settings.
- Set Location Services to Never.
- Turn Background App Refresh completely OFF.
2. Turn off autoplay for videos
Facebook autoplay not only wastes unnecessary battery life, it also wastes data. If you’re on a limited data plan, you’ll definitely want to make sure you check this one off your list:
- Launch the Facebook app and tap on More at the bottom.
- Choose Settings.
- Tap on Account Settings in the popup.
- Tap on Videos and Photos.
- Set Autoplay to Never Autoplay Videos.
3. Revisit your notification settings
Facebook notifications can get completely out of hand from time to time. Whether you realize it or not, every single time you receive a notification and Facebook lights up your iPhone’s screen, your battery takes a hit.
I’ve found that turning Facebook notifications off not only saves battery but keeps me off Facebook more often. Me not checking Facebook as frequently also helps me save battery life.
You can edit Facebook’s notification settings just like you can any other app by launching the Settings app and then choosing Notifications. You can also access them via the Facebook settings panel I showed you in the first section where we talked about how to disable Background App Refresh and Location Services.
I personally have all Facebook notifications disabled but for the sake of battery life, you should at least disable the Show on Lock screen option for Facebook notifications. At the bare minimum, this keeps Facebook from lighting up your screen for every notification, yet all your Facebook notifications still show up in Notification Center.
4. Delete and re-install the Facebook app periodically
Facebook can take up a lot of storage space over time. Deleting and re-installing the app is the only way I know of to capture it back. It’s also the only solution I’ve found to strange battery drain that can’t seem to be rectified any other way.
A relative of mine kept complaining that their iPhone was out of storage space. When I looked into it, Facebook was taking up almost 5GB of space on her iPhone.
Yeah, I can’t think of a good reason for that either. It’s ridiculous and disgusting and Facebook should be ashamed. But since they’re not, all we can do is delete and re-install the app periodically in order to clear the cache. As you can see above, just deleting and reinstalling the app freed up 200MB of storage space.
I do this rather frequently, but those of you that don’t may be surprised by how much storage you see Facebook taking up.
5. Flick away the Facebook app
In my other article about saving iPhone battery I advise you against flicking away apps. However, I realized that flicking away the Facebook app did impact my battery in a positive way since it wasn’t still able to run in the background (despite Background App Refresh being set to off).
However annoying this solution is, if you can remember, flicking the Facebook app away in the multitasker seems to be an exception to the general rule, especially in terms of the time the Facebook app spends running in the background.
And if you already know you’ll never remember to do that…
6. Add the mobile site to your Home screen instead
If you’re still having iPhone battery issues due to Facebook (or at least your fairly convinced Facebook is the culprit), there’s a simple way to find out. Completely delete the Facebook app and just add the mobile website to your Home screen instead. This way you can access your account easier, but you don’t have any of the extra crap bogging down your iPhone that that the app brings with it.
Your Facebook draining iPhone battery fixes?
Have you experienced any battery drain issues on iPhone because of Facebook? If so, were you able to remedy them? If you have any other iPhone battery tips, feel free to share them in the comments too!
Marcelo Ávalos says
You missed one feature: Photo Sync.
This is the service that privately uploads your entire camera roll to Facebook, so you can share your photos later. This works in the background. You can check your Photo Sync settings inside the Facebook app by going to your Profile > Photos > Synced.
When I found out Facebook was using 4x as much battery in the background as it did thru onscreen use, I took the nuclear option and deleted it. I’m not sure why I ever trusted FB to actually have its code on my phone! From now on all Facebook activity will be through the protective buffer of Safari.
Exact same strategy I used.
Brian B. says
I would also mention using Friendly+ for Facebook (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/friendly-plus-adblock-login/id382011064?mt=8). It’s a wrapper for the mobile website for Facebook except you get AdBlock built in to the browser, plus the ability to save articles to Pocket, etc, plus tons of features
Stirling Robert Campbell says
Delete the app, use the mobile web version, cannot agree more. Any developer I know on any mobile platform has done this, if they use Facebook at all..
DELETE the Facebook app!
I did more than a year ago and my battery life has been just dandy! If I want to use Facebook on my iPhone I do it the same way I do it on my Mac: With Safari!!
I also use it via Safari. To get notifications I use IFTTT to read my FB RSS feed. Not as instant as the app but better than nothing