Note: in this blog we refer to Background App Refresh. On an android device, it is referred to as Background Data Usage.
When you install apps onto your second-hand iPhone or Samsung Galaxy, many of them are installed with Background App Refresh set to “on”. Background App Refresh is a very handy feature which allows the apps on your phone to update in the background, even if you aren’t using them. Here are some examples of why it is handy:
- Your news app will continually search for the latest headlines and push them to you as notifications when notable headlines emerge.
- Cloud storage apps automatically sync document updates.
- A Netflix or similar app will pick up the latest series and movies listed in the background and push notifications to you of what is new.
- Twitter will search for the latest content so that it doesn’t take too long to load when you open the app.
- Emergency services apps may track your location in the background.
Depending on how you use your apps, Background App Refresh may deliver important features for you. I like to receive push notifications on my preferred news app, and so I keep this one turned on. However, I’m not a big TV watcher and so I’ve turned off the Background App Refresh on my Netflix app – I don’t need to be notified when a new series or movie is available.
The more apps for which you turn off Background App Refresh, the greater the benefit will be to your battery life.
How to turn off Background App Refresh on a preowned iPhone
- Click Settings.
- Scroll down a little and click General.
- Scroll down a little and click Background App Refresh.
- You will see a list of all the apps installed on your phone. Next to the name of each app is a button that you can toggle: On (green) or Off (grey). Run through the list and toggle off for all the apps for which you don’t need background app refresh.
How to turn off Background App Refresh on a second-hand Samsung Galaxy
- Click Settings.
- Scroll down and click Data usage.
- Scroll down and click Mobile data usage.
- You will now see a list of apps installed on your phone.
- Click on the app you would like to turn Background App Refresh on or off for.
- Go to Allow background data usage where you can toggle the button: on (green) or off (grey). Run through the list and toggle off for all the apps for which you don’t need background app refresh.