Four simple ways to make your tablet run smoothly

Here are four simple fixes that will get your tablet up and running at optimum speed again in no time.

Tablet performance

It doesn't matter if it's a smartphone, a tablet, a laptop, or a desktop computer; a sluggish device is — and will always be — the worst kind of device to work with. This problem remains consistent from platform to platform, and it can result from a multitude of reasons. For example, you might experience long app loading times and slow performance on your Android smartphone because you didn't set a limit on the number of messages it can store, and your PC might be running at a snail's pace because you haven't defragged in a year. A tablet is no different. It's a powerful tool for the on-the-go professional — but if you don't pay attention to it or take care of it properly, it'll eventually become less useful.

Don't think of replacing your tablet (or throwing it away) just yet, though. Here are four simple fixes that will get your tablet up and running at optimum speed again in no time. Note: Make sure to back up all your important files and settings before performing any of these fixes.

1. Remove unnecessary apps and make more room

More often than not, the problem lies in having way too many applications installed on your tablet. I can tell you with absolute certainty that you don't need all of those apps. If you ever experience problems with your tablet's performance, the first thing you should do is to check your list of installed apps. If you're not using certain apps regularly, or if your tablet has way too many games, it would be best to just uninstall them, or at least move them to an external memory card, to improve your tablet's speed.

It also helps to get rid of some of the default programs that came with your tablet if you have or use other applications that perform their functions better. If you have a better media player for your tablet, for example, then you should consider removing your default video player and mp3 player apps to free up some space.

2. Disable flashy settings that don't really serve any important purpose

Fancy effects can be quite burdensome to your device. Sometimes, they're enough to make your tablet completely stop in the middle of scrolling, loading an app, or viewing another page. These settings can be disabled, though. So, if you're not the type of user who goes crazy over elaborate effects and animations, simply go to the settings menu of your tablet, look for the corresponding tab or item for special animation effects, and switch it off. You should notice a considerable improvement in tablet performance soon enough. If you prefer one viewing mode to the other (Portrait over Landscape, for example), you can also disable Auto-Rotate, especially since it's pretty jarring (and annoying) at times.

3. Keep your screen clean (literally and virtually)

Much like the touch screen of your business phone, your tablet's screen is highly susceptible to dust and fingerprints. When dirt starts caking in and becoming stubborn residents on your tablet's screen, it'll become less responsive to your touch commands, which is really frustrating. Simply take a clean microfiber cloth (some people apply water or professional cleaning fluid on it first) and gently wipe the grime off your screen. Make sure you never spray the screen directly with liquid. For more tips on cleaning your tablet screen, see this DIY method and another post about cleaning products.

Try to get rid of icons or widgets you're not using, too. Having too many of these on your screen takes a toll on your tablet's internal memory and makes it harder for the device to process commands.

4. Format your external storage on a regular basis

This is the tablet (and smartphone) equivalent of disk checking and defragmentation for the PC. Format your tablet's SD card once every three months just to keep the system running at its peak.

What fixes or steps do you take to increase the performance of your tablet? Share you experience in the discussion thread below.

Michelle Simpson is a full-time professional editor that focuses on online writing services, specializing in the field of technology like RingCentral PBX, business, and current trends in the industry.

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