Recently uncovered at XDA-Developers is the true purpose of CarrierAgent IQ. I noticed it on my Samsung phones, as well as a version on my HTC Evo. I've always wondered what it is, what it does, and why it's there. Well k0nane over at XDA has an explanation.
Put simply - and bluntly - Carrier IQ is a software package buried deep within Android by Samsung at the behest of Sprint. It has been in active use since the time of the Moment, if not before. The company that develops it, also known as Carrier IQ, bills it as "Mobile Service Intelligence". In their own words,
That being said, the question still must be asked - why is the service even running? Why does Sprint and Samsung feel the need to leave a dormant monster in every one of its most loyal customers' phones?
Here's the most important part (tl;dr): the Carrier IQ service is a drain on battery life and performance. ACS noticed a significant rise in Smartbench scores and overall system 'snappiness' after Carrier IQ's removal. In addition, with it removed, ACS team lead rjmjr69 saw 30 hours of battery life, with heavy use, on the stock battery.
Downright scary. I am currently looking at any legal recourse we can take if any. Please leave a comment below or at this thread:
IQAgent Discussion Thread
I am currently investigating this as we speak, and I literally rushed this post out as quickly as possible. Stay tuned for more info.
UPDATE 3/6 12:56PM: I've e-mailed email@example.com for an explanation. Let's see what they have to say.