If you’ve ever observed your iPhone’s battery draining excessively quickly when using the Facebook or Messenger apps, it might not be a random occurrence. According to a former Meta data scientist, the company may discreetly drain users’ Android and iPhone batteries for internal app testing.
In an interview with The New York Post, George Hayward claims that he was fired in November for refusing to participate in “negative testing” while working on the Messanger app. Negative testing, according to QASource, allows developers to “compare the expected output versus the incorrect output” by demonstrating how an app responds to improper data.
Facebook’s negative testing might examine how specific features function or how rapidly messages load when batteries are depleted more quickly than anticipated.
Hayward, who initially filed a case but withdrew it because arbitration was required, claims that the method “could harm somebody” by unexpectedly draining their battery. However, Hayward doesn’t specify how many individuals the unfavorable testing may have affected or whether the Messenger testing progressed past the beta stage.
However, Hayward claimed to have received an internal guidebook called “How to run thoughtful negative tests” with actual battery-draining experiment examples. Then he claims that his refusal to take part in the tests led to his termination from the company after three years. For now, it’s unclear whether Facebook will be required to engage or what the lawsuit’s next stages are.
According to Hayward’s attorney, his client supports the claims of the “clearly illegal” activity.