The AVG Android™ App Performance Report Q1 2015 unveils the top 10 favorite smartphone apps that eat up the most phone battery, storage, and data allowance. Covering January to March 2015, the study tracked a surge in dating and chatting apps, including POF Free Dating, WeChat, and ooVoo Video Call as among the top social installs, top battery drainers, and top data plan consumption lists.

In addition, weather apps appear to be hungry.Apps such as Yahoo Weather and The Weather Channel appeared for the first time in the list of top Android apps most likely to burn through your data allowance,. Weather & Clock Widget Android is also a top battery drainer.

The top findings from the report are:

  • Casino games topped the charts for most overall time spent per app: This quarter saw a massive spike in time spent on Card and Casino games as well as blockbuster Arcade games, with the likes of Solitaire and Zynga’s Livepoker entering the charts. On the flip side, we spent far less time playing casual, strategy, puzzle or family games.
  • Dating app enters Top 10 installed social apps: With Valentine’s Day falling within this quarter, it’s no surprise a free dating app, POF Free Dating, entered the Top 10 most installed apps.
  • Chat apps are still the greediest apps: Mirroring previous reports, social media and chat apps continue to rank as the greediest Android apps, with Facebook, BBM, Instagram, Facebook Messenger and WeChat accounting for five of the top six most resource-hungry ‘auto-running’ apps.

With the host of new apps entering the charts for popularity and impact on our smartphones, AVG broke down the top 10 overall impact findings to identify impact differences between apps which require the user to initiate them and apps that auto-run all the time.

Autorun   User Run
# Name   # Name
1 Facebook   1 Spotify Music
2 BBM   2 Amazon Kindle
3 8 Ball Pool   3 LINE: Free Calls & Messages
4 Instagram   4 Samsung WatchON (Video)
5 Messenger   5 Snapchat
6 WeChat   6 Netflix
7 Facebook Pages Manager   7 SoundCloud – Music & Audio
8 ooVoo Video Call Text & Voice   8 Clean Master (Speed Booster)
9 KakaoTalk: Free Calls & Text   9 Tumblr
10 Vine   10 PicsArt Photo Studio
  • Silent smartphone sapping apps: Facebook kept its top slot in the list for apps that drain phone resources, but a more surprising entrant was the 2D game, 8 Ball Pool, which wouldn’t seem necessary to register as a startup app and run constantly in the background.
  • Start up and drain down: although users may choose to start these apps, they may not be aware of the potential impact of using them. For example, Spotify allows 3,333 songs to be stored locally which can eat up storage, while its data-heavy music and video service can drain your data plan allowance. Many of the other apps in this category are also content-heavy and should be used with care.

“Many of us take every day practical apps like weather and chat for granted and despite spending little time on them, the impact on our devices is actually quite significant,” said Tony Anscombe, Senior Security Evangelist, AVG Technologies. “A number of unexpected apps such as these are consuming battery, storage, and data traffic without users knowledge – and, in many cases, for no good reason. So if you’re wondering why you’re not getting the best performance out of your device, this could well be why.”

Analyzing aggregated, anonymous data from over one million AVG Android app users, the quarterly AVG Android App Performance Report aims to reveal the top performance-affecting apps worldwide – analyzing their overall impact and performance against three key categories – battery drain, storage consumption, and data traffic use.

The full report, which breaks down the performance impact further according to battery drain, storage consumption and data traffic, can be downloaded here