How (And Why) to Overclock Your Android Device

Remind me, what's overclocking?

For as long as there have been PCs, there have been people overclocking them. It started off as a means to get more performance out of a computer than it was capable of straight off of the shelf. PC gamers have been overclocking their CPUs, RAM, and video cards since the beginning, always striving for a few more frames per second. Over the years, overclocking has even become a competition in itself.

What is overclocking? For anyone who might be unfamiliar with the term, “overclocking” refers to forcing a processor to run faster than its manufacturer’s specifications suggest. For instance, if you had a computer with a 2.4GHz Intel Core i5 processor, you could potentially overclock it to run at 3.5GHz instead, yielding significant increases in performance.

Of course, there’s a downside to overclocking as well. As you ramp up the performance, you also ramp up the power consumption and heat output. Going too far can lead to system instability or even physical damage. With a PC, you can do things like install a liquid cooling system, or even go as far as liquid nitrogen cooling. But, PCs aren’t the only things that get overclocked.

Just about anything with a processor has the potential to be overclocked. Wireless routers have been overclocked to provide more throughput when many devices are connected. The TI-89 calculator you likely used in high school has even been overclocked. It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise when we tell you that smartphones are great overclocking candidates as well, and if you wanted to learn how to overclock your Android phone, you’ve come to the right place.