One of the weaknesses of some smartphones is short battery life. At the moment, there is still no phone with a battery power enough to last a month or even one week without a charge. This means that daily, you need to keep your phone juiced up to be able to keep taps with the goings on in the world and communicate with others.
Android and iOS smartphones are power suckers. But how do you improve the battery life of your phone so that you can get more hours out of it?
We have given practical strategies that will help you maximize the battery capacity of your phone.
1. Enable Battery-Saving Mode
The best smartphones out there have a battery saving mode function that enables them to perform optimally while using little power.
When your phone is in power saver mode, screen brightness and other power-hungry processes that would otherwise consume more battery power are automatically toned down.
2. Dark Themes Are Better
Yes. Dark themes are more energy efficient than bright themes. Your battery pays the price you use beautiful, crisp wallpaper or animated wallpapers.
With dark themes, there aren’t many colours to render, so you save energy, unlike bright themes that need a lot of power to display different colours.
3. Do Not Drain Your Battery Completely Before Charging
Many smartphone users wait until their battery drains to 0% before they remember to get it charged. When you let your battery discharge completely, you stress it greatly.
For better battery efficiency, keep the battery above 20% and below 90%. So charge your battery before it hits the 20% mark and unplug it if you can just before it hits the 100% full charge.
If you are not going to be using your phone for a long time, say 3 months, charge it to 50% (yes, 50%) before keeping it away. This is better than charging it to 100% or storing it without a charge (i.e., at 0% charge).
Just know: your battery isn’t immune to deterioration when switched off because most smartphone batteries are designed to be used.
4. Use Wi-Fi Instead of Cellular Data
If you have an option to use Wi-Fi instead of cellular data, please go with the former. Cellular data (also known as network data) drains your battery without mercy.
In fact any feature that shuts down network on your phone increases your battery life. Have you noticed that your battery lasts longer when you turn on the Airplane mode? If you haven’t, try it. However, enabling this feature will cut you off from receiving calls and messages.
5. Restrict Some App Permissions
Some apps are notorious for using up a lot of battery power. A good example is the Facebook app, which drains your data, too. One way of reducing the battery usage rate of your phone is to restrict what these apps can do.
Using Facebook as an example, you can disable autoplay (which plays videos automatically), location tracking, and notifications.
Additionally, we recommend turning off app auto-updates.
6. Adjust Screen Timeout
Screen auto-lock times can be adjusted to suit the user. By default, most screen timeout time usually lasts 60 seconds or more. If you care about your phone’s battery power, we suggest setting your screen to go off after 60 or 30 seconds of inactivity.
This has a downside: you may have to touch the screen constantly to prevent dimming when reading a book on your phone or an article online. We are happy that there are apps that can help you manage screen auto lock times for the apps you use. Tasker app comes to mind.
Some apps like Greenify will detect power-hugging apps on your phone.
There are Android phone features like the Doze which activates the sleep mode automatically when you place your phone on a table.
7. Disable Tracking Services for Some Time
Disable functions like location services, near-field communication (NFC), phone visibility, because most of these features drain your phone’s battery life. Location services and NFC use phone’s network a lot.
Any function that relies on network to function is usually energy-consuming.
8. Maintain the Right Temperature
Good Lithium-ion batteries – which power most smartphones, maintain good charge capacity when they kept in an environment where the temperature isn’t more than 45°C. Temperatures below 0°C are bad, too.
Very low temperatures are not ideal because they give little room for the lithium ions and metal present in batteries to move. Higher temperatures boost battery power. You battery power capacity begins to diminish at a very fast rate as soon you expose your phone to excess heat. In summer especially, we suggest you keep your smartphone away from direct sunlight.
10. Reduce Screen Brightness
This is one major reason most phone batteries drain easily. Reducing a phone’s screen brightness helps in energy conservation. This you can adjust manually. Thankfully, too, most smartphones have an Auto Brightness feature which is useful.
Although, auto brightness reduces the screen brightness to a certain level, only. On some smartphones, the auto-brightness feature has screen brightness level options.
But adjusting the screen brightness manually allows you reduce it even to 0%.
11. Use Fetch Instead of Push
With push notification, you receive updates as they happen, while with fetch, you only get notifications when you at different time intervals or you do it manually, depending on your choice. We recommend setting your notifications to fetch manually. Syncing information manually saves energy.
Some apps set to push notifications, however, do not really use a lot of battery power.
12. Say No to Superfast Charge
We understand you need your phone charged quickly and fast charge comes in handy when we are in haste. But is it always good to use the fast charge option on our smartphones? Well, no.
The reason is this: the storage ability of a battery deteriorates very fast when you constantly charge it using the fast charge feature. It is better to charge a battery in 1 or 2 hours than supercharging them in 10 minutes. Slow battery charging at night helps.
13. Reduce Charge Cycle
You may not know this: every time you juice up your battery from 0% to 100%, you degrade its capacity gradually. Charging from, say, 50% to 100% causes battery degradation, too, but only half the full charge degradation process.
Batteries deteriorate by 20% after every 400 cycles. In plain English it means that at this point your phone’s battery capacity reduces by 80%. An additional 400 cycles, will further take its energy capacity to 60%. This continues until it is time to replace the battery.
So what do you do then? Slow down the charge cycle. How? Reducing screen brightness is a good step. Generally, limit activities on your phone that make visit the wall socket every hour.
These strategies will improve the battery life of your phone. But remember, every battery has a lifespan, so there comes a time when none of these would work. This means that it is time to replace your battery.