Facebook App Sapping iPhone Batteries? Here’s What to Do

The Facebook iOS app is taxing iPhone batteries. Update now.

Do you feel as though your iPhone is burning though its battery life when you run the Facebook iOS app? That’s because it is. Facebook confirmed an issue related to video playback and iPhone battery use.

According to Macworld, the problem happens after you watch a video, a silent audio track keeps playing in the background. So the app is consuming an iOS device’s resources, even though nothing is happening.

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A second issue is one related to what Facebook calls “CPU spin.” Facebook Engineer Ari Grant described this in a blog post:

The first issue we found was a “CPU spin” in our network code. A CPU spin is like a child in a car asking, “Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?” with the question not resulting in any progress to reaching the destination. This repeated processing causes our app to use more battery than intended. The version released today has some improvements that should start making this better.

Grant also noted that the battery drain issues were not related to enabling “Location Services” or from using the optional location history features, as some were speculating across the Internet.

These issues have been resolved in the Facebook iOS app that was released today. You can automatically apply the update by going into iTunes and “Settings.” Enable “Updates” from the “Automatic Downloads” menu item.

“We are committed to continuing to improve the battery usage of our app and you should see improvements in the version released today,” Grant wrote.

Users also complained about batteries quickly draining with the Facebook at Work iOS app. Parthiv Patel, an engineering manager at Facebook confirmed in a response to a Facebook comment, “We have merged the CPU fix into FB@Work.” However, he made no mention about the audio playback issue.