How to uninstall Bloatware from your Android phone

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Most smartphone manufacturers bundle proprietary apps to promote their services. This may include an additional app store or an app linked to the brand’s e-commerce portal. Many smartphones even come pre-installed with third-party apps that are part of the carrier’s plan or are included to subsidize the cost of the phone.

Apart from these apps, they are commonly referred to as bloatware. Bloatware is a term used to refer to applications that may be useless to a user and therefore take up space and consume resources on a smartphone.

Luckily, you can easily uninstall bloatware from your Android phone.

What is bloatware

Android phones that offer manufacturer-specific customizations, especially budget phones, come preinstalled with several proprietary and third-party apps. This may include streaming apps, social media apps, and app stores that you cannot use.

bloatware on android

Of course, something that is considered bloatware to some may be important to others. So it’s up to you which apps you use regularly and which ones are bloated and can be uninstalled.

Why should you uninstall Bloatware

All apps installed on your phone take up a certain amount of storage. They also consume resources such as RAM and Internet bandwidth. Uninstalling bloatware from your Android phone will help you save all those resources. This means that these resources become available to the important apps and services you use.

uninstall bloatware on android

In some cases, bloatware apps also repeatedly send you unwanted notifications, which can get rather annoying. That’s why it’s a good idea to uninstall bloatware from your Android phone.

How to Uninstall Bloatware on Android

Uninstalling bloatware has been a common practice on Android for quite some time now. However, it was mostly limited to rooted devices. The method we are discussing, however, also works for unrooted Android phones. So anyone with an Android phone can use it.

Some applications are important for the proper functioning of your phone. Uninstalling some important apps can crash your phone and make it non-functional. So, proceed with caution and only uninstall apps that you know are not important, such as GetApps, Clean Master, Play Movies, Facebook, or other third-party apps and carriers.

Setting up ADB on your computer

Setting up the ADB (Android Debug Bridge) requires that you are familiar with the command prompt or terminal and be prepared for troubleshooting if something goes wrong.

Step 1: We will use ADB to uninstall bloatware from your Android phone. For this, you will need to download the relevant files depending on the operating system you are using.

ADB Tools on Mac

2nd step: Extract the ZIP file to a location of your choice. In Windows, hold down the Shift key and right-click on the extracted file, then select “Open command window here”. On Mac and Linux, open the terminal type in CD and press Enter to change the current directory.

Then drag the folder you unzipped and drop it into the terminal window. You will now get a path to this folder on Terminal. Press Enter.

Terminal window to uninstall bloatware

Step 3: Open the Settings app on your Android phone and go to About Phone.

About Phone on Android

Step 4: Find the build number and tap it 7 times repeatedly to unlock developer options. If you have already unlocked it, skip this step.

Build number

Step 5: Go back to the Settings app and type Developer Options in the search bar. Tap the corresponding result.

Developer options to remove bloatware

Step 6: In the developer options, you will find the USB debugging option. Enable the toggle next to it.

USB debugging option

Step 7: Connect your phone to your computer using a USB cable. Make sure the connection mode is set to MTP/File Transfer.

USB connection

Step 8: With your phone unlocked, in the Terminal window, type ./adb devices and press Enter.

adb devices to uninstall bloatware

Step 9: You will now see a prompt on your phone asking if you want to allow USB debugging. Select “Always allow from this computer” and press OK.

Allow USB debugging

The terminal window will show a string of numbers under “List of connected devices”. This indicates a successful setup of ADB on your computer. Also, your phone seems connected.

Android Connected Adb Devices

Finding names of packages to remove

Step 1: Head over to the Play Store on your Android phone and download an app called App Inspector.

2nd step: Open the app and browse the list of apps installed on your phone. When you find an app you want to uninstall, tap it and you’ll see the package name listed under the app name.

package name to uninstall bloatware

Step 3: Write down all the packages of the apps you want to uninstall. We will use these package names in ADB to uninstall apps.

Uninstalling Bloatware Apps

Step 1: With your phone connected to ADB, type the following command and press Enter:

./adb shell

ADB shell to uninstall

2nd step: Now type pm uninstall -k –user 0 Package name. You will need to replace the word PackageName in the text with the actual package name from the previous step. Then press Enter.

Uninstalling bloatware

Step 3: Your phone will uninstall the app and you will see a confirmation message in the terminal window with the word “Success”. Repeat the process for each app you want to uninstall. Make sure to use the correct package name.

Uninstallation successful

Disconnect your phone from your computer after all apps have been uninstalled.

Reinstall a deleted app

If you uninstalled an important app by mistake and want to get it back, here’s how.

Step 1: With your phone connected to ADB, enter the following command and press Enter:

./adb shell

ADB shell to uninstall

2nd step: type now pm install-nameofexisting package in the Terminal window. You will need to replace the word “PackageName” with the name of the actual app package you wish to reinstall. Then press Enter to run the command.

reinstall apps

The application will be installed again on your phone.

Get rid of bloatware

This is how you can uninstall unwanted apps from your phone and have a decluttered experience. No more annoying notifications from apps you don’t use!

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