November 24, 2016 | by Patrick Icasas
How to Train your Phone for Maximum Battery Endurance
If your phone were an athlete, it would probably be a sprinter. Quick, powerful (and really flashy), but only good for a short distance. Most of us have taken it in stride as a necessary evil of modern technology and adjust our lives around our cellphone’s battery capacity, hence the development of universal chargers and portable battery packs.
But the truth is, we’re not tied down to that limit. With the right habits and tweaks, we can train our devices to push past the wall and develop much longer battery endurance.
But we’re not all super-social extrovert types who network like they were born to it. We stumble through conversations with strangers, hoping that the other person doesn’t notice or is just as awkward we are.
1. Trim the fat
First thing you need to do is understand what exactly is weighing your battery life down. First order of business is to delete the apps you’re not already using. You see, some apps will quietly run in the background and use up your charge, even though you never actually turn it on. So it’s in your best interest to just get rid of them entirely. Not only will you potentially save battery power, but you’ll also free up space on your device storage.
Once you’ve done that, it’s time to do a more comprehensive examination of whatever apps you’ve got left.
On your Android device, navigate to Settings > Battery for a detailed breakdown of where your juice is going. If you see an application that uses up a significant amount of power, ask yourself whether or not you really need it. If the answer is no, then delete it or turn it off.
2. Stop broadcasting so much
I don’t know about you, but I never turn on Wi-Fi until I’m actually ready to actually use it. And I’ve rarely encountered the need to turn on Bluetooth. The one time I did, my battery drained at such an appalling rate it was like watching a countdown clock.
Turn off all of the hardware radios like GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC and everything else you’re not immediately using. You’ll feel the difference as if you were running in track shoes instead of boots.
3. Shed the bling
I get it: home screen widgets are cool and are part of what make phones so useful. But they also use up a lot of juice, even when they don’t like they’re doing anything. Each home screen widget is like having a mini-app activated all the time. Add up enough of those, and you’re weighing your phone battery down a noticeable amount. Live wallpapers have a similar effect. They’re cool, but are they worth killing your battery faster? I vote no!
So take out unnecessary home screen widgets and replace your live wallpaper with a static one. Oh, and when you do, remember to use dark wallpaper. If your phone uses an AMOLED display (and most Android devices do), then each single pixel uses a little bit of power to light up. So the darker your display is, the more juice you can squeeze out of your battery.
4. Take out Push Notifications
You know how your phone buzzes, vibrates, and/or lights up any time a new event comes in? That happens to me all the time when I use chatting apps like WhatsApp and Viber, and to a (slightly) lesser degree with other apps.
While these push notifications may not use up a lot of charge, keep in mind that we’re trying to turn our phone into a lean, mean battery-saving machine, and every little bit helps. So take out push notifications for those apps that just don’t need that kind of attention.
5. Keep all your apps updated
Apps are constantly being refined to provide faster performance and be more efficient. So update all of your apps (well, whatever apps you’ve got left after your audit), and check in on them every once in a while.
Oh, and if your phone has the option, disable the auto-update feature. This is a sneaky little devil that will choose to run an update at the worst times. Like a dog that decides to chase you while jogging.
6. Try installing a battery saving app
There’s an app for everything nowadays, even for preserving battery life. Here are some of the more popular battery saving apps for you to try:
- Snapdragon Battery Guru.This nifty app is at the top of the list because it does what it claims to do—save battery life, but in a totally hands-free fashion. It learns the user’s habits over the course of a week, and tweaks your phone’s settings and app usage based on your routine.
- Greenify.Greenify’s strength is in managing the apps on your phone. It automatically puts them in sleep mode, preventing them from installing updates, running in the background or waking up your device. When you want the app, just turn it on and it’ll run like normal.
- Battery Saver 2016.You know all the standard tricks by now—turn down brightness, turn off Bluetooth, monitor and disable other power-sucking apps. But the real strength of Battery Saver 2016 is that it makes all of these options immediately available in one or two screens. No need to page through multiple menus and toggles.
A word of caution: be careful when choosing a battery saving app. The ironic thing about apps like these is that they sometimes consume more power than they actually save. So monitor the results and see if the apps actually help.