ComputingSoftware

What is Bloatware and Should You Remove it?

what is bloatware


When you buy a new PC, you want it to arrive in excellent condition and perform with high speed and efficiency. However, this isn’t always the case. You may check and make sure that all the components are compatible, and may still find that the PC is not as fast as you expected it to be. In that case, it is possible that your PC has bloatware.

Similarly, you could discover that your smartphone performs unusually slow because of the dubious apps that are operating in the background.

Bloatware is preloaded software that comes with a PC, smartphone, or tablet. It takes up space, drains the battery, and slows down the computer’s performance.

Bloatware is rarely helpful and serves mainly as an income source for makers and distributors. It is annoying at best and destructive at worst.

In this article, we will learn everything there is to know about Bloatware, taking Windows 10 bloatware as an example. Let’s start!

What is Bloatware?

In very simple terms, Bloatware can be defined as inefficient software (running in the background) that slows your device down by taking up extra space, memory and chewing up battery life.

Bloatware, often known as crapware or Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUP), is any unwanted, hidden application that comes preloaded by the manufacturing company, distributor, or carrier on your laptop, PC, or smartphone.

Since it generally blends into the backdrop, it’s not always as easy to spot as you would want. That does not imply that Bloatware is a type of malware.

However, some bloatware acquired from malicious sources or unintentionally installed with third-party applications may include viruses.

There are two common ways that Bloatware may be placed on your seemingly safe PC or smartphone.

  • One way is that it might arrive pre-installed on your PC, tablet, or phone from the manufacturer.
  • The second way is that it might originate from apps you’ve downloaded from the internet.

Let’s discuss both ways in detail.

Pre-installed Software

Chances of getting Bloatware of this sort is the most common and likely the oldest way. Manufacturers are accustomed to selling gadgets with pre-installed software.

This is done in order to generate more money by recommending other products to you, such as security suites, file managers, music apps, or third-party software.

Bloatware that comes pre-installed on your PC or smartphone is usually safe and is simply placed for adverts, which is unpleasant. Still, you may not feel compelled to uninstall it right immediately.

However, it would help if you considered removing it as Bloatware like this has the potential to be vulnerable to external threats (like malware).

Downloaded Software

Software and Apps downloaded directly from the internet are regarded to be riskier than pre-installed software because some of it is designed to harm a system or a user. It doesn’t mean that all downloaded Bloatware is unsafe, but it certainly raises the security risk.

Bloatware coming from these sources may well attribute to only slowing down your PC or smartphone or continually displaying advertisements.

Alternatively, it might open the door to more dangerous cyberattacks, surveillance, and remote machine management practices.

Bloatware is frequently downloaded through rogue websites, questionable links, or advertisements. It may also be included with the apps that you have requested.

Bloatware is also notable for being difficult to remove and for reappearing even after it has been deleted.

Why is Bloatware a Threat

Bloatware, for starters, can cause your PC or smartphone to run slowly. They can chew up your RAM if you have a number of these apps loaded during device start-up or running in the background. RAM speed and timings are essential for the performance of your PC.

When Bloatware starts to slow down your PC or smartphone, this is where you should delete it.

Malware and Adware cause more serious problems for users. It may also spy on you in addition to presenting pop-up advertising when you’re using your computer (even if you’re not online).

Others may not be hostile, but they may unintentionally expose you to risk. One of the most well-known examples is Lenovo’s Superfish software, which exposed customers to hacker assaults and eavesdropping.

Types of Bloatware

We can break down different forms of Bloatware now that you have a better understanding of what it is, the nuisance it may create, and the threat it poses. They aren’t the only bloatware instances you’ll encounter, but they are the most common by far.

Trialware

Bloatware is a common occurrence on Windows 10 PCs.

Consider a recently purchased PC that already has applications installed. The installed program in this scenario requires a license to function, although it is available in a free trial mode.

It will stop operating once the trial period has over. Still, it will continue to use your device’s resources and may have vulnerabilities and exploits.

Trialware is usually not dangerous, although it might be inconvenient. The silver lining is that it is not buried in the background of the device, making bloatware removal very simple.

Toolbars

Toolbars are any stubborn browser menus that are difficult to remove. Pre-installed toolbars are seldom as good as their personalized versions.

They base their menu items on your surfing behavior and are sometimes clumsy and filled with irrelevant websites. And, like the infamous Ask toolbar, toolbars will frequently hijack your browser.

Utility Apps

Manufacturers preload a variety of utilities and third-party applications that enhance the performance of your device.

Some of these utilities, like backup, file management, and video editors, are useful, but you may not use them all. Remember that if you utilize it, it might not be Bloatware.

Third-party utilities are typically simple to uninstall, but you may not be able to do so with manufacturer applications. Check the ones you use frequently and those you wish to get rid of.

Adware

Adware is a type of pop-up advertising that bombards you with spam messages while you’re surfing the web.

Since Adware is placed directly on the web browser (Block Websites on Chrome), advertisements will follow you from one browser to the next, even if you erase your cookies.

Adware, which is seldom pre-installed by manufacturers until it stifles performance, is highly irritating and can expose you to security concerns.

About author

A finance major with a passion for all things tech, Uneeb loves to write about everything from hardware to games (his favorite genre being FPS). When not writing, he can be seen in his natural habitat reading, studying investments, or watching Formula 1.
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