Android users:  Beware of power drops when booting upUsers of Android devices for ereading, including the $50 Kindle Fire, will from time to time want to reboot. Usually this is to clear the memory, speed up functions, and in some cases, even extend battery life. But there’s sometimes a surprise downside to this easy process – a sudden, inexplicable power drain on your device. For all I know, this may happen with iOS and Windows Phones too, but I know very well it does with Android devices.

I found this problem out with my Vodafone Smart Grand 6, but it’s very clear that the same issue arises with many Android devices. After some sluggish performance, I decided to reboot the device, while it was plugged in to a charger. Before the reboot, the power level was around 49 percent. After the reboot, power was down to around half that. Even with a charger, the reboot had cost me around 25 percent of the phone’s battery life.

It’s the first time I’ve observed this issue with any device I own, but there are many examples from the various Android forums of users experiencing similar problems. Often they blame the manufacturer. But this seems to be more a generic problem across Android devices – and no one has a clear explanation or a clear fix, at least that I’ve been able to find so far.

Some claim that this is an issue with the battery monitoring software, which is briefly confused after the reboot, and suggest that the battery reading will come back to its old level after a while. That’s not what I’ve observed. The battery level stayed stubbornly low and required a regular recharge to bring it back up again.

So there you are: an Android problem that no one seems able to fix. If I do find a fix, or even some clear idea of what the explanation is, I’ll put it up. Otherwise, just be careful when rebooting your device in case you need to rely on battery power afterwards – you may not get as much of it as you think.

Photo credit: Here.


  1. There’s a very simple explanation for the power drop: during a reboot services and apps first have to shut down, which means the cpu usage spikes to 100% and information in memory is written to flash storage in preparation for the reboot. During the boot itself, these services and apps have to start up again. In addition there are lots of apps that perform tasks on boot that they otherwise don’t do (or not as often). You’ll see a spike in data used, and if you’re in a place with bad coverage, the phone requires more power to transfer data. During certain types of updates to system components, ART/Dalvik data will have to be recompiled, which means a huge drain on the battery.

    Suggestion: use an app such as Startup Manager ( ) to check what runs at boot, and disable the ones you think you don’t need. Uninstall apps you don’t use. Oh, and do a factory reset once every 6 months and after any OS updates – re-evaluate your installed apps at the same time.

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