Google Employee Claims Google Now App Does Not Cause Significant Battery Impact

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, May 2, 2013.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    After Google Now was added to the Google Search app last week, many users began complaining that the app was draining battery by constantly accessing the iPhone's Location Services.

    According to a Google employee who posted on the Macworld forum (via The Next Web), Google Now does not excessively drain battery, despite the fact that the app often causes the Location Services icon to remain active.
    The employee, who was confirmed to be working for Google by The Next Web, goes on to say that Google Now was tested for several months on iOS without reports of significant battery impact. In the Google Search app description, Google clarifies that the app does not access the iPhone's GPS, using cell towers and Wi-Fi hotspots as the employee claims.

    Google Now, which is Google's version of a virtual assistant, continually accesses user data to provide information like local weather updates and traffic conditions, which is what may be causing issues for some users.

    Not all Google Now users appear to be experiencing battery problems, with some MacRumors forum members reporting no excessive battery drainage while others report rapid battery loss.

    Article Link: Google Employee Claims Google Now App Does Not Cause Significant Battery Impact
  2. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 7, 2008
    I just hate the location icon constantly being in the status bar, that is the reason I turned it off.
  3. macrumors newbie

    Sep 28, 2012
    I would have thought the same. Since the app is running 24/7 who knows how much battery life it drains.
  4. macrumors member

    Aug 28, 2008
    Ive had the app for a week, and haven't had any battery issues.
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Apr 26, 2005
    How about the "many users" quit complaining and stop using the app? Instant fix.
  6. macrumors 6502a


    Jan 21, 2013
    My battery has still lasted me all day. That's weird.
  7. macrumors regular


    Aug 16, 2009
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 20, 2012
    That fixes nothing.
  9. macrumors 65816


    Jun 17, 2009
    Lincolnshire, England
    Exactly the same, it's now disabled on mine. Shame though.
  10. macrumors member

    Aug 18, 2009
    Grokr is a very similar app and had the same exact problem at launch but fixed it very quickly with a software update and now works perfectly. Google should have no excuse to fix this
  11. macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2002
    "I notice significant battery loss. But Safari feels much snappier!"

    - I'm guessing this is the layperson reaction. It's all a matter of perception.
  12. macrumors member

    Sep 14, 2010
    Funny but I believe it does

    Have a co-worker that downloaded it when it came out and later in the day was complaining about his battery life.
  13. macrumors member


    Apr 19, 2010
    My battery life…

    …is actually longer.

    And it's growing new hair on my head!
  14. macrumors 68040

    Aug 8, 2008
    I haven't noticed my battery life changing at all. I think people that claim it's draining their battery have something else going on.
  15. macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    I believe what Google says. Mainly because the complaints I saw popped up mere minutes after the app launched.

    Those aren't battery complaints. Those are "I see an arrow" complaints. Real battery assessment takes days.

    I've had many other apps that use geofencing (like Apple's own Reminders) without seeing a huge impact on battery. I'm sure this Google Now service works the same way.
  16. macrumors 6502a


    Apr 21, 2007
    New York, NY
    Turned on Google Now. Left home, listening to tunes. Went from full charge to half charge in 3 hours. Turned off Google Now. Still playing tunes. Went from half charge to quarter charge in 5 hours. I don't know what Google calls "significant battery impact" but I know what I call "significant battery impact".
  17. ChazUK, May 2, 2013
    Last edited: May 2, 2013

    macrumors 603


    Feb 3, 2008
    Essex (UK)
    Battery life seems the same on my iPhone 4. I don't understand the fuss.


    I've only just put my iPhone back on charge for the nightly refuel whilst I sleep.
  18. macrumors 6502

    Apr 3, 2009
    London, UK
    Fix what? Have been trying this out for a few days with no noticeable impact on my battery.
  19. Amazing Iceman, May 2, 2013
    Last edited: May 2, 2013

    macrumors 68030

    Amazing Iceman

    Nov 8, 2008
    Florida, U.S.A.
    I wasn't aware this was a problem until I saw this article.
    I did noticed last night the Location Services icon showing on the top bar in my iPad. When I checked to see what was accessing it, it was the Google app, which was not even open or running. It's probably a background process it has.

    Continued access to Location Services could definitely cause battery drainage. So as a quick fix I disabled Location Services for Google.

    Take note I haven't seen this behavior until I upgraded to the latest Google app.

    Does anyone else noticed something like this?

    - I just enabled Location Services for the Google app, and immediately the Location Services showed on the top bar (Google app is not open)
    - I restarted my iPad and Location Services didn't show anymore.
    - I ran the Google app, and the Location Services icon appeared again, and remained showing even after I closed the Google app. It's been about 5 minutes and it's still showing. The only two options is to restart the iPad or turn off Location Services for the Google app.

    All I can say is that it's definitely a bug in the Google app. It must leave a process running in the background, causing this problem.
  20. macrumors newbie

    Apr 23, 2009
    I had significant battery drain from this app, normally lasts through the day and ends around 30%, but after google Now it dies around 4pm. I went into settings in the app itself (not iOS Location Settings) and turned off location reporting and it still seems to work well enough but without the drain so far.
  21. macrumors member

    Dec 19, 2009
    Not True!

    My battery was being drained because Google left the locations feature on.

    The crazy thing is that it kept locations running even though I would completely close the app down. I even tried restarting the phone with no avail.

    At first, I couldn't figure out why the locations feature was on until it hit me. I had updated the Google app. Once I removed the app all was well again.
  22. macrumors 603


    Feb 3, 2008
    Essex (UK)
    Has anyone got screenshots of their excessive battery usage in the settings menu at all?

    Would be interested to know which phone they're using in case it's related to a specific model/version.

    Very odd!
  23. macrumors Core

    Oct 17, 2011
    Or you could simply go into the options within the Google app settings and disable the background location setting there (so the app can still use location when needed, but won't do it "continuously" in the background).
  24. macrumors 68030

    Amazing Iceman

    Nov 8, 2008
    Florida, U.S.A.
    Good observation. I didn't check, because I didn't think they would be so stupid to continuously access it. That would definitely drain a battery!

    Edit: it's called Location Reporting and it's inside Privacy. That took care of the problem. Thanks!
  25. macrumors 6502a

    Dec 8, 2009
    I haven't noticed much decrease in battery life. By the time I hit the bed my phone is sitting at 40%. I have room to spare in terms of battery life.

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