In previous articles, we’d treated some negatives effects that Bloatware could have on the speed (see https://journal.hovatek.com/how-to-easily-make-an-android-phone-run-faster-or-stop-lagging/ ) and user experience (see https://journal.hovatek.com/how-to-solve-the-problem-of-heavy-data-consumption-in-iphone-ipad-and-android-smartphones-tablets/ ) of an Android phone . In this brief article, we’ll be looking at how to identify bloatware and remove them.
What are bloatware?
Bloatware are unwanted applications that come pre-installed (by the manufacturer) on an Android phone. In other words, any pre-installed application which the phone doesn’t need to function (might also consume excessive disk space / memory) can be classified as Bloatware.
Why do manufacturers include Bloatware?
Having a popular mobile application pre-installed could be a marketing boost for the phone. The manufacturer might also have been paid to have other applications pre-installed for advertisement purposes.
Are bloatware harmful?
No they’re not, although they might consume valuable resources like disk space or memory, resulting in a reduced performance. Any pre-installed application that is harmful to the phone or user can be classified as Malware.
How do I identify bloatware?
There’s no definite answer to that because One Man’s meat is another Man’s poison. Any pre-installed application which you feel you (personally) don’t need can be tagged as bloatware.
Why are Bloatware so difficult to remove?
Their location. You can’t uninstall most bloatware like you would a regular application because they’re system applications. You will need root permissions to edit the system partition (see https://journal.hovatek.com/how-to-root-android-easily-without-pc/ for more information on Android rooting).
Where (on the phone) are Bloatware located?
They’re often located in the system/app folder. On some phones, they could be in vendor/operator/app , system/priv-app, system/preloadapp or other folders. You’ll need a root browser to access these directories.
How do I remove bloatware?
* Go to Settings > Apps > Downloaded and uninstall any bloatware you find there
* Ensure the phone is rooted and backed up (see https://journal.hovatek.com/how-to-root-android-easily-without-pc/ to know more about rooting in Android)
* Be careful what you delete from the /system folder else you’ll end up bricking the phone (see https://journal.hovatek.com/how-to-unbrick-fix-a-bricked-android-device/ to know more about bricking)
We’ll consider two methods:
1. Using a system application uninstaller
2. Manually deleting the bloatware apk
A. How to remove bloatware using a system application uninstaller
1. Install System App Remover (ROOT) and launch it (authorize if prompted for root permissions)
2. Tick the system app(s) you wish to uninstall and click the red uninstall button at the bottom
3. Tap Yes to confirm
4. Wait while the app(s) get uninstalled
5. You should get a confirmation that the uninstallation was successful
B. How to remove bloatware using a root browser
This method is ideal for removing bloatware stored in locations outside system/app
1. Install ROM Toolbox Lite and launch it (authorize if prompted for root permissions)
2. Scroll down and select Root browser (tap No if prompted to download additional utilities)
3. Depending on your phone type, navigate to the location of the bloatware (they could be in vendor/operator/app , system/priv-app, system/preloadapp or other folders )
4. Tap Multi-Sel at the bottom
5. Select the apks and odex files you wish to delete then tap Delete
6. Select Yes to confirm
7. Wait while the files get deleted
My phone is stuck at brand logo after deleting something wrong in the /system folder. How do I fix my phone?
You need to flash back system.img or system.ext4.tar depending on the format that your /system directory is in the ROM. Please, create a new thread at our forum and our reps will provide free step by step assistance (see https://forum.hovatek.com/thread-514.html for how to create a thread) .
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