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Hangouts 2.1+ Drains An Excessive Amount of Battery, Google Working on a Fix

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SMS in Hangouts may have come a long way since its initial integration, but it is still quite rough around the edges. Case in point? A few users on Reddit and the Hangouts Google Group have reported experiencing higher-than-normal battery usage – as high as 30% – caused by excessive wakelocks, potentially as a result of having a large number of saved conversations.

A Google employee acknowledged the issue and said engineers may have found a fix, but was unable to provide an ETA. 

In the interim, users have reported that downgrading to a Hangouts version below 2.1 fixes the issue. Let’s hope Google squashes the bug soon (and adds Google Voice support while they’re at it).

Have you been experiencing this issue?

Via: Hangouts Google Group | Reddit
  • Nitin Chopra

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.playfulgeeks.gservicefix

    here is working solution…app link from playstore

  • http://chadbordes.com Chad Bordes

    I love hangouts, however, Im sticking with the native app with t-mobile because I can use wifi calling and still get my texts and MMS. With hangouts, it sticks and never delivers the MMS.

  • JoeTi

    +1 to add Gvoice. Cmon Google. And voice calls over carrier networks already.

  • Dan Bracey

    This is a big problem on my VZW Galaxy S5, after the most recent updates, hangouts/Android OS eats the battery alive.

  • jer85008

    No issue on my N5, I’ve used Hangouts only for SMS and never had any problems.

  • ROB

    Disabled and went with HELLO, much happier now.

  • jadeveon da destroyer

    They should work on the ios version of google search too, while they are at it bc its latest update is a battery killer as well.

  • Crafty

    Please fix the issue where my contacts don’t show up in the notification bar. It just shows a generic contact icon.

    Also some conversations show up as having multiple participants even when there’s only just me and one other person. It splits the contact picture in half for no reason.

  • Supraman21

    Have they fixed the group messaging issues?? I get excited every time there is an update to Hangouts only to be disappointed because they didnt the group messaging issues. Im sick of my friends receiving my messages individually outside of the group chat. Also receiving messages individually that say “Try downloading the message”

  • Ryan

    I’ve got 2.1 on my Moto X and haven’t experience any battery draining from it. Maybe its because I don’t typically have a lot of conversations in it or something since I don’t text a lot of people.

  • mizo

    Speaking of battery drain, has anyone had Google play services using nearly the same amount of battery as screen time on their Moto X? This has been a pretty common issue, even before the new hangouts.

    • Crafty

      It did it to me too. A reboot fixed it.

      I’m using Google Play Services 4.4.52. Cheers.

  • Dark_Laser

    Where’s the fix for not being able to make Google Voice calls like in the iOS version?

    • LionStone

      My buddy has been trying to get it to work on iOS. He says “making a call is not the issue nor very impressive, receiving a call, that’s the trick. Talkatone however (which was discontinued), if you called my Google #, both cell phone and ipad would ring. Even if they were turned off or running 10 things, the button popped up to answer or decline calls.”

    • Brad

      All these comments about Hangouts not having Voice are false, make Hangouts your default SMS and you have voice calls.

  • crazed_z06

    Android OS/Android System have been running amok lately

  • Tomek G

    Never had those problems with Google Talk

  • BoFiS

    I’ve been running Hangouts 2.1 for a while now and have not noticed it causing wakelocks or showing up under Battery Usage at all…my highest has just been Android OS lately (possibly due to new Play Services issues)

  • AbbyZFresh

    I gave up on Google with Hangouts a long time ago. WhatsApp never gave me much problems.

  • ddpacino

    Not sure. Seems to have excessive battery usage, but Hangouts doesn’t seem to be a culprit via the stats. Still investigating, but we’ll get an update before we know it, and hopefully with a GV surprise!

  • Fabyloso

    No issues here. One glitch to some, does not mean the app sucks. I love Hangouts!

  • Nick

    I have to say Hangouts sucks. I started using it b/c it was supposed to be able to send GIFs. But for some reason everytime I’ve ever tried to send one out, its just a Jpeg. So I switched back to Textra

  • WallBreaker

    Evolve SMS is what I use now 100s of themes.

  • SparkysShocker

    My Hangouts, ever since the update that merged sms and email hangouts, has been restoring group messages that I delete. No matter ho many times a I delete them they keep coming back.

  • Bob Omb

    No problems with anything here, N5.

  • gambit07

    I wish hangouts was the problem. However, the real problem is Google Play Services. The wakelocks are insane

    • coolsilver

      location location location

      • michael arazan

        Like a paranoid GF tracking where you are

  • Disqus_n00b

    N5 battery life has taken a hit the last month or two. just me?

    • slider112

      Not just you.

    • zurginator

      Mine has tanked so much it’s ridiculous – I only get about 6 hours – and the ONLY thing I use it for is Audible.

  • Frank Claycomb

    Not having this issue but notifications are not working for me. Seems pretty rough around the edges still.

  • mgamerz

    It’s hitting my N5. I’m developing an app and am using Hangouts to test its notification reading ability. Once I get a single hangouts message it starts to heat up and barely charges as its sucking energy fast.

  • http://people.ign.com/mrfrodo24 MrFrodo24

    “Let’s hope Google squashes the bug soon (and adds Google Voice support while they’re at it).”

    AND implements KitKat transparency on the notification and nav bars, pretty please.

    • zurginator

      It’s against the design guidelines to do transparency when using the menu bar (I can’t think of the term right now). I think it’s BS, but it is what it is, and until Google changes their mind on that we won’t see it used in a lot of apps.

  • Jim Davis

    I switched to Textra. Never liked Hangouts.

  • acejavelin

    I haven’t had this issue and I use Hangouts as my default SMS app, which means it gets used a lot… What I want to see is the ability to SEARCH messages, seriously, for a Google product and them being a “search engine” company, this is the major downfall of Hangouts in my opinion.

    • r1aven

      Searching text messages used to be a part of basic android functionality but I think an apple patent and lawsuit caused it to be removed from the default text messaging app and thereby not implemented in hangouts … yay …

  • Booyabobby

    Maybe that what causing android OS on my Moto X to spike at 50%.

  • Mordecaidrake

    I haven’t had any issues on my S4.

    • http://chadbordes.com Chad Bordes

      I have. My s4 eats a battery ever 4 hours. I have 6 batteries

  • https://www.heartbleedbug.com Intellectua1

    Is that what it is? I was trying to figure out what app I downloaded that was draining my battery.

  • Prime7

    I was actually just wondering what’s been killing my battery recently.

  • http://thebeeobee.com/ thebeeobee

    Man I would pay $9.99 for imessages on Android. Please Apple!

    • Daeshaun Griffiths

      This is sad because I would pay more than that.

    • Mordecaidrake

      May I ask why such hate for Hangouts? I find the service to be pretty phenomenal.

      • The Narrator

        but nothing like iMessage

      • http://thebeeobee.com/ thebeeobee

        No particular hate for hangouts. It’s just that it’s a ghost town. Most people, even android and AVID gmail uses, don’t even know what it is.

        Hangouts is actually more of a skype replacement than a sms replacement, imo. I know that’s splitting hairs, but that’s where it fits into my life.

    • Sam

      except refine it so its not sending texts multiple times or even have it realize when you no longer have an iPhone or the recipient no longer has one. I cant tell you how many hoops i’ve had to jump through just to get my gf’s friends to be able to text her. iMessage is great, if you have an iphone. Otherwise its a total hunk of crap.

      • http://thebeeobee.com/ thebeeobee

        Yeah, which is why I wish Apple would extend it to other platforms. Would fix those issues and extend a great sms replacement to us android users.

        • Sam

          if not for that issue with switching platforms i do agree. I liked iMessage and everything about it.

          • http://thebeeobee.com/ thebeeobee

            The other issue would be contacts. Not sure how it would sync gmail and apple contacts (even though a solution to that would also be great).

          • http://chadbordes.com Chad Bordes

            this is what KILLS me. Why can’t google nail a similar idea to imessage? I mean seriously how hard is it. Apple figured it out 4 or 5 years ago. its frustrating. Seems like android is the bastard child that gets the least amount of attention

  • Mrgwaps

    Great I don’t know what’s worse, this or the fact that google has an Instagram account. SMH…Lets get it together Google.

  • MacNificent

    For some reason. I get really excited whenever I see a post with the hangouts icon in it!

    • sc0rch3d

      I will join to Voice my opinion

      • gambit07

        Haha, that was good

      • Christopher Robert

        I would rather gVoice it…;-)

        • Colton

          booooo

    • Jprime

      wish they would make it less slow

      • MacNificent

        Slow as far as what? I don’t see any problems with it on my G2 or second gen nexus 7. Help me out. Maybe I’m using it wrong or too right..

        • Jprime

          it loads slow

          • MacNificent

            Yeah see I don’t have that problem.

          • Jprime

            Ok

          • zurginator

            I have the same slow load on my N7 (G2) and N5 – I wonder if it has something to do with the number of messages?

    • Ryan N

      What ever happened to a fix for 4.4.2? That camera glitch is the worst thing to ever happen to a battery.

      • coolsilver

        They quietly rolled that into a Google Play Services patch

    • FrankBoston

      ditto!

  • mike

    Ah, this must be why my GNEX keep dying!!…. j/k. I haven’t had any issues with this. 2.1.100

  • Guest

    I wish this app never existed

  • rutgersjaffo

    QUESTION COMPLETELY UNRELATED TO ARTICLE: A while back one app or another was featured on here that let me place a hidden side menu on the home screen. Just had to do a hard reset and have no recall whatsoever as to what it was. Anyone have any ideas? You would get a message in the pulldown bar which would ask you to touch it to activate sidedock if you wanted to do so, or you could just pull from the side. Sorry, I really liked it together with Cover and I would love to have it back, lol. Thought it was anew feature of Go but that does not seem to be the case. Ugh…

    • rfranken

      not sure. Go to the Play store. then My Apps. Then swipe right to the All Apps. It should show up there if you downloaded it from the Play store.

    • Lawrence_Hart

      Action Launcher has a side menu on the right that can be accessed in any app. Is that a possibility?

    • Egnimatic_Foolishness

      No clue what app you’re specifically referring to, Butttttt I just started using something that is similar.

      I’m rooted, using Xposed Installer.
      The module is called Xblast tools.
      There is a circle app launcher which allows you to swipe the side of the screen and pull up your preselected app choices,
      and there is app bar which is very similar but seems to be more flexible.

      I definitely recommend it, I just went back to stock yesterday with no regrets.

    • trd105

      Was it 9 Cards Home Launcher?

    • pubasnacks77

      Handy Soft Keys?

      • rutgersjaffo

        It was GO Launcher. For some reason when I installed a new Theme it disabled the feature completely. Had to uninstall and reinstall to find it, but thanks much guys.

  • T4rd

    Hasn’t been an issue on my Note 2 or my new One M8 so far. Don’t even see Hangouts listed in my battery usage stats even though I use it daily.

    • jbdan

      Same

    • pravs

      I dont see any issues with my moto g either..Hangouts is not listed in my battery usage stats

    • archercc

      Nada on my Nexus 4, Hangouts isn’t listed and I didn’t notice any real change in battery life.

    • Colton

      haven’t seen it in my battery usage either but is top in process stats in developer options

    • Arnold

      Doesn’t show up as Hangouts, but as Android OS.

  • TheDave1022

    Ive noticed some excessive hangouts battery use for the amount i actually use it and been happening since last update

  • JoshJop

    Yes I had this issue.. Thought it was my phone alone being dumb.