Do Android apps with ads affect performance and safety?

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Technology - Software
Tuesday, 20 March 2012 00:30

Today, Google Play Download More than 450 thousand applications based on our teams Android , which can be paid for, completely free or ad. In the latter case, while we are convenient because they offer interesting features without additional costs, two studies by universities identified potential problems: lower phone performance and security risks.

According to the work published today researchers from Purdue University and Microsoft, the processes related to the ads can consume up to 75% of the device's battery. This includes not only display the banner, but also related to statistics and sending location data to the company that manages advertising.

To demonstrate this, they resorted to EProf tool, whose function is to separate each strand and analyze what their energy consumption. After testing with Angry Birds, FreeChess and the New York Times app on a Nexus One with Android 2.3, the results showed that in the first two, the applications themselves need only use 30% of the total battery. Regarding the latter, 15% was used to track users.

This detail is also related to another study that was released, by the North Carolina State University, who analyzed one hundred libraries advertising used by some 100,000 applications between March and May last year. As Android makes no distinction between the app and the tool that displays ads, you can run third-party code to collect data quite unnecessary for proper operation.

For example, the popular Angry Birds offers a free version monetized by AdMob , which probably have seen in many products. For this issue of privacy, Google could get the points scored by the user and save it on your servers. In other cases, as detected with AdRisk tool, you can capture up the phone number, the call log or list of installed applications.

What they do is both reports show that despite the existence of Bouncer to combat malware, need more control over the environment of each application, considering that it is very common the appearance of ads. not an easy task , as demonstrated by regulating Facebook ad networks that can be used within its platform, but should do so before the occurrence of abuse.