Issues with Google’s Pixel devices aren’t anything new. We (and everyone else) have been complaining about bugs and performance issues with the Google flagships for years, and the Pixel 3 is no different. However, it may be a Pie addition that could be hurting the performance of one of our favorite devices.
According to a few reports, turning off Digital Wellbeing has improved the performance of some people’s Pixel 3 devices by quite a bit. Stutters and lags are gone, bringing a flagship experience back to a flagship phone. Digital Wellbeing was created to monitor app usage and allow you to cut down with things like app timers and a “wind down” mode that would turn the display black and white. However, it’s seemingly backfiring.
Now, such reports are usually overblown and may not even be true. However it’s entirely possible that Digital Wellbeing’s constant monitoring really is hurting device performance on the Pixel series, and disabling it could help with issues like stutters.
If you want to try it out for yourself, head to Settings > Digital Wellbeing, hit the three dot menu in the corner, and press “Turn off usage access.” From there you can switch usage access off for the app and it will no longer be able to monitor your app usage.
You will be losing functionality (that Google happens to be quite proud of), but performance is definitely worth the sacrifice. Time will tell if this really is a fix for any performance issues but it’s worth a shot!