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Samsung's Game Optimization Service might be throttling the performance of over 10,000 apps

Two people playing games on samsung phones.
(Image credit: Getty - JUNG YEON JE)
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Twitter user GaryeonHan (opens in new tab)and a legion of Samsung smartphone users (thanks to Android Authority (opens in new tab)) have compiled a list of over 10,000 apps whose performance has been reduced or throttled when Samsung's game optimizing app, GOS, is running in the background. Though strangely no phone benchmarking apps appear in the list. Funny that.

What's allegedly happening is that Samsung's Game Optimizing Service (opens in new tab) (GOS) app, which optimizes game performance (to improve battery life and reduce heat) on Android phones, might be 'optimizing' things that aren't games. Users have complained that tons of apps and services, such as Netflix, Samsung Pay, and even the phone dialer have been running poorly whenever GOS is active. 

GOS seems to whitelist phone benchmarking apps like 3DMark and Geekbench from artificially limiting. So if you're running a benchmark, you might think there's nothing wrong or see any performance dip whatsoever unless, of course, you use an app that is affected. 

A Korean Youtuber (opens in new tab) found a way to trick GOS into seeing 3DMark as Genshin Impact and was, therefore, able to benchmark the throttling in action. It reduced its benchmark score by more than half when running on a Galaxy S22 Ultra. GOS is preinstalled on some Galaxy S21 and older phones, and there are reports that it is also preinstalled and non-removable on the new Galaxy S22, too. 

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This isn't the first time a phone maker has had complaints of app throttling; last year, OnePlus was caught secretly throttling apps (opens in new tab) without letting the users know to help conserve battery life. Benchmarking apps, much like in this situation, remained unaffected.

Samsung is reportedly investigating these claims and plans on issuing an official statement soon. So, for now, it's probably best you check if you have GOS installed on your phone and uninstall it if possible. Here's hoping Samsung doesn't get any bright ideas and puts GOS on its Galaxy Book laptops.

Jorge Jimenez
Hardware writer, Human Pop-Tart

Jorge is a hardware writer from the enchanted lands of New Jersey. When he's not filling the office with the smell of Pop-Tarts, he's reviewing all sorts of gaming hardware from laptops with the latest mobile GPUs to gaming chairs with built-in back massagers. He's been covering games and tech for nearly ten years and has written for Dualshockers, WCCFtech, and Tom's Guide.