How To: Your Android Device Can Help Save Lives While You Sleep: Here's How to Help Out

Your Android Device Can Help Save Lives While You Sleep: Here's How to Help Out

"Millions of us have smartphones with the power to speed up research that will benefit billions of people around the world." - Professor Francois Grey

"As mobile phones become more powerful, their computing power can be harnessed and create more processing power than any supercomputer on the planet." - David P. Anderson

These statements highlight not only the power our smartphones and tablets contain, but also their potential for use outside of our personal day-to-day routine.

Introduced earlier this year, HTC's Power to Give campaign enables any of us with Android devices (running Android 4.4 or higher) to use our device's processing power to compute some of the data necessary to solve the world's deepest challenges.

"With Power To Give, you can help process the data that might lead to the next cure for cancer, help understand climate change, or find the next clean energy project—all in the downtime when you're not actively using your Android device." - HTC

How to Get Your Device Set Up

The concept is simple: download the HTC Power to Give app, select a project, plug your device in at night while you sleep, and let the app utilize your unused processing power to compute data.

Requirements for using the app are:

  • Android 4.4 or higher
  • 1.5 GHz dual-core, or 1 GHz quad-core processor
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • Minimum battery charge equal to 90%
  • Wi-Fi connection

Because the app will only actively utilize your device under these conditions—and while the screen is off—it prevents you from waking up to a dead battery or using any of your carrier's allocated data.

Open the app, select a project, and sign up. Once you've registered with your selected project, simply plug your device in and turn your screen off to begin harvesting your processing power to the project. It's that simple.

You'll even see a notification letting you know that when your device's screen is on, the Power to Give app is suspended.

Give the app a shot, and put your device to some actual good while you're not using it. And if you picked up a new Galaxy S5 or HTC One, Power to Give is a great way to utilize your old device.

Remember, with enough devices contributing, we can not only surpass the power of the world's supercomputers, but use that power for projects that otherwise wouldn't have the access.

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Wow this sounds amazing! Almost too good to be true. Are there any drawbacks to using this? Security issues?

No security issues, and because the app only runs when your device is plugged in and on WiFi, it has no adverse effects on battery life.

I wonder if it can be cracked to be used as just that.

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