AriGrantFacebook has come clean. Yes, it’s been a battery hog for iOS users, admits Ari Grant, engineering manager.

But he says a fix is now out, and you can make certain your iPhone or iPad is running the latest version, 42.0 (weighing in at a mere 89MB).  At least one customer-reviewer in the Apple Apps Store says the change had no effect. True?

For whatever it’s worth, here is Grant’s explanation of the battery abuse, served up in a post last week:

“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 says the second issue was Facebook’s management of audio sessions, less than fully effective in terms of battery conservation.

Fine, but why did the geniuses at Facebook give us the crapware in the first place? It’s a bit like Chromebook’s memory issues on so many machines—and, yes, Chrome can also be a battery hog in some cases.

Outfits like Facebook and Google remind me of arrogant urban developers who, unless people speak up, don’t give a squat about their skyscrapers blocking out the sunlight for the inhabitants of less lofty structures. If only e-book lovers and other users had a zoning commission to guard against big companies’ abuse of our battery resources and others! Not a perfect comparison, but you get the idea.

Meanwhile, in terms of battery life, Facebook’s Android side has a long way to go. See Paul St John Mackintosh’s recent post What better performance from your Android device? Kill these apps.


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