How to check RAM usage on Android with 3 simple steps

It’s important to open this kind of article by saying that Android is quite advanced in RAM optimization and memory management, and you shouldn’t worry about RAM usage on Android. If you have 4+ GB of RAM don’t stress if the system takes the majority. The more RAM it uses, the better. And, considering that most contemporary phones have 6 GB or more of fast RAM, you can relax. However, if you need to know what’s eating up a large amount of RAM and have a better insight into RAM usage on Android, there are a few ways to do so. Check the steps we provided below.

How to find what’s eating up your RAM on Android

1. Use the system resources

Most Android skins come with some kind of utility tool that tracks storage, RAM, and battery usage. Also, it provides unnecessary antivirus protection. And usually have a single-tap optimization that will suggest certain steps or outright clear cache from RAM and Storage and disable background activity for intensive apps unless you have a Pixel device or device that has close-to-stock Android skin that doesn’t come with this kind of tool.

These built-in tools (e.g. Samsung Device Care) can also give you a better insight into real-time actual RAM usage on Android. Here’s how to use Device Care to learn what’s eating up your RAM:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Select Battery and device care.
  3. Select Memory.
  4. You should see the list of active apps and how much RAM they are using at the moment. You can also expand the Apps not used recently section to see that list, as well. ram usage android

For Xiaomi (and POCO and Redmi) devices, you have an even more simple way to check actual RAM usage on Android. Just navigate to Settings > Apps > Manage apps. You can also toggle the “Show system processes” option to see how system processes use RAM.

Under each app on the list, you should see how much storage space and RAM it uses. You can sort apps by RAM usage to find out which app is the biggest consumer.

Additionally, you can add a quick RAM overview in the Recents menu. To do that, follow the steps below.

  1. Make sure that you use the default launcher.
  2. Tap and hold on to the Home Screen and open Settings.
  3. Scroll down and enable the View available RAM option.

Every Android skin on a “heavy side” (OneUI, MIUI, EMUI, ColorOS, etc.) has some built-in solution to check RAM usage on Android. Although the procedure might differ on different devices the concept explained above is pretty similar. You just need to dig a bit deeper.

2. Check data in the Developer options

An alternative to built-in tools is the Running processes option in Developer options. This offers a better insight into RAM usage on Android, considering that it shows not only real-time app usage but also the history of RAM usage for apps and their respective services, as well. That way you can better determine which app hogs the RAM when active or inactive.

To check data in the Developer options, you’ll need to enable this menu. Here’s how to enable Developer options and check RAM usage on your Android:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap About phone. You might need to open Software information.
  3. Tap 7 times on the Build number and enter PIN/password if prompted.
  4. Get back to Settings and open Developer options (or System > Advanced > Developer options).
  5. Open Running services.ram usage android
  6. You can tap on the 3-dots menu to switch between Active and Cached services. Active processes belong to apps that are actively used or working in the background. Cached processes belong to closed apps and services that are cached in RAM.
  7. Here, you can see the graphic of RAM usage and the list of apps. If you tap on an app, you’ll see all its services.

This is the best way to find out about RAM usage on Android if you own a Pixel device or another close-to-stock handset like Android One phones from different manufacturers.

3. Use third-party apps to check RAM usage on Android

Finally, you can use a third-party app to check RAM usage but, due to Android limitations, you won’t be able to see the per-app usage with third-party apps. I, personally, use DevCheck, albeit for different purposes. This app has my recommendation since it’s simple, free, and on point. You can download DevCheck from Play Store. A mandatory statement that Mobile Internist is not affiliated with this app.

Do you have any other third-party apps to suggest? Tell us in the comments section below. Thank you for reading and we look forward to hearing from you.

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in June 2018 and focused on RAM usage on Android 8 Oreo. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy and adapt it to Android in general.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

If you just learned something new about your phone, and want more of that, subscribe to our newsletter.

We guarantee 100% privacy. Your name/email address will never be shared.

Notify of
1 Comment
Most Voted
Newest Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments