How to uninstall pre-installed system apps (bloatware) on any Android device, including carrier/OEM apps.
If you’ve bought a new smartphone in the last few years, you’ve noticed some apps already downloaded. While it can be convenient to have helpful apps without any hassle, in addition to essential apps, there are often unwanted apps that come pre-installed. Even though it’s okay for these apps to be pre-installed, they can be annoying when they show awkward notifications and eat up storage space on your phone.
In computing terms, these pre-installed apps are called “bloatware.” However, not all apps are classified the same way. Bloatware refers to apps that are unnecessary for you and can vary from user to user. Some users may find the pre-installed Facebook helpful app, while others may find it useless. In this case, the question is how to uninstall such apps. Hence, this article will discuss removing bloatware from your Android device.
Remove Bloatware: Uninstall System Apps from Any Android
There are plenty of options we can try to remove system apps, but many of them violate ethics. This is because most methods rely on rooting the device, which is illegal. However, uninstalling these annoying programs is also necessary. Therefore, we have explored several options and found a few ways to uninstall such apps. Although some methods are similar to uninstalling, the main one is through ADB. So we will start with the ADB method.
Note: Since the ADB method does not require rooting, we will need to follow some steps to accomplish it correctly.
Enable USB Debugging
Connecting a smartphone to a PC via USB debugging is possible on every smartphone. However, we need to navigate through developer mode to do this. But it can be done. Please follow the steps below for a better understanding.
- Open Settings and scroll down to “About Phone.”
- Under About phone, tap the Build Number “7 times” to enter developer mode.
- Now go back to Settings and select Developer Mode.
- Next, locate USB debugging and toggle it on. That’s it; you’re done.
Connect your phone to your PC.
Now that you have enabled USB debugging on your device, your PC will allow your phone to share media. However, you will need a USB cable to physically connect the device. Once you connect your phone to a PC, it will show two options: transfer files or keep charging. Choose “Transfer files” and “Allow USB Debugging.”
Install ADB drivers on your PC and get the device code name.
With ADB drivers, your PC will recognize different processes. You need an ADB driver for your PC to communicate with your device. Finding an ADB driver for your PC can be challenging. But if you want an easier option, you can follow these steps:
- Download ADB drivers for Windows and Mac here.
- Next, open the downloaded ADB file.
- Press Shift + Right-click on it and select “Open PowerShell Window Here.”
- Type “ADB devices” to see your device code name and serial number. That’s it; you’re done with this step.
Use ADB commands on your PC (the final step).
An ADB command is the last switch that helps us uninstall system apps on our phones. You need to become more familiar with ADB commands as an average user. For your convenience, you can follow the steps below, including the command.
Note: The command below requires the package name of the application that you want to uninstall. To find the package name, first download and install App Inspector. Also, remember to use the same steps for uninstalling every system app.
- Simply open the ADB command window.
- Then use the command below: pm uninstall -k –user 0 “name of a package.”
- After that, press Enter to apply it.
That’s it; your system applications will be uninstalled.
With these steps, you can uninstall any system app. However, we recommend that you don’t use core system apps such as Google Messages, Dialer, and similar ones. This can be applied to other apps, such as Game Center or similar apps.
There is another way to uninstall system apps. However, you can only remove apps that have admin permission. Therefore, if the system app you want to remove holds device admin permission and you do not wish to follow through with the above procedure, you can do it this way. To uninstall such system apps, please follow the steps below:
- Open your phone’s settings.
- Find and tap on the security section.
- Under that, search for the “Device Administrators” tab.
- Now, select the system app you want to install from the given application list.
- Finally, tap on Deactivate, and you’re done.
Furthermore, if you accidentally uninstalled a system app and are unsure how to get it back since you just deactivated it, there is a way to reactivate it. To do this, simply reverse the above steps. More specifically, go to the same device administrator tab and reactivate the app you deactivated earlier. If you have any other questions, please ask them below.
Frequently Asked Questions
Ans. You can refer to the above guide for instructions on uninstalling system apps.
Ans. Uninstalling system apps can break overall system functionality and cause other system malfunctions.
Ans. You can refer to the above guide for instructions on disabling Android system apps.
Ans. It is recommended to remove those unnecessary apps that take up a lot of storage space.
However, be careful not to remove any core system apps necessary for your device’s functioning.
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