The Best and Worst Android Apps for Battery, Data and Security
Verizon is now reviewing a handful of Android apps for their battery use, data use and security.
CREDIT: Google Play
Draw Something, Fruit Ninja Free and Grand Theft Auto III are all "high risk" apps, according to a new list from Verizon. All three games keep devices from going into sleep mode, draining battery at a rate 1.8 to 2.7 times faster than normal.
Verizon has started reviewing Android apps not for how helpful and fun they are, but whether they drain battery, use more data than customers might expect and pose a security risk, as GigaOM pointed out. The reviews could be especially helpful as those qualities are more difficult for everyday phone users to determine than "Do I like using this app?"
It may also be an especially good move for the Android system. The apps in Apple's App Store undergo review before they're allowed through, which helps keep out software that isn't secure. Last year, Google introduced software that scans Google Play apps for malware, but it doesn't work perfectly. Malicious apps continue to be found in Google Play and Google, unlike Apple, depends on user feedback to spot bad actors.
Popular apps that get high marks include Angry Birds, Instagram, Pandora and Twitter. More middling ratings appeared for the Ebay Official Android App, which lost points for its data usage; Facebook Messenger, also docked for data usage and Need For Speed: Most Wanted, which eats up more than two hours of battery life when it's running in the background, but not being used.
Corrected Feb. 11: This article previously said that apps posted to Google's Play Store don't undergo review for malware. Google does scan apps for malware.