Tips to improve your smartphone battery life

5th February 2014
Tips to improve your smartphone battery life

Everyone's experienced the panic when your smartphone battery drains quicker than you'd like it to – and you've got no way of charging it. Here are some tips you can employ if you're out for the day without access to a plug socket, but need your device to last!

Turn down the brightness

You might never have adjusted the brightness setting on your phone, but the display is one of the biggest battery killers – especially now screen sizes are getting larger. You'll be surprised how quickly your eyes will adapt to the dimmer screen and you'll forget you ever changed it. Many smartphones include auto-brightness settings that adjust depending on your surroundings, so make sure you disable that so you're in control of the levels. If you take one thing away from this guide, let it be this tip.

Turn off what you're not using

When you've paid so much money for a top-of-the-range phone, you don't want to be told not to use it. But there's no harm in closing down apps once you've finished using them, because that's just wasting battery juice. On iPhones, you need to double click the home button quickly and swipe away the apps you're no longer using. It's important to do this with apps such as maps, which can really drain the lifespan. If there are apps you use frequently, then leave them open – but chances are there'll be some apps running that you haven't used in a few days. 

Similarly, when you're not using 3G, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, turn them off. You can easily put them back on when you need to use them. When you're not expecting a call that you'll want to take via your headset, turn off your Bluetooth. Similarly, do the same with Wi-Fi, except when you actually need to link up. It might be difficult to remember to do this at first, but you'll soon get used to turning it off and on throughout the day. 

Don't use vibrate

The vibrate setting has helped many avoid potentially embarrassing situations in meetings or weddings, but when it comes to saving battery life, it could be one to avoid. If you think about it, a ringtone only has to make a tiny membrane in your phone's speaker vibrate enough to produce a sound. In comparison, the vibration motor needs to make your whole device shake and, unsurprisingly, that process takes a lot more out of your battery. If you are waiting for a call on a day when you need to save battery life, think about always having your handset in view so when your screen does light up silently, you can see it and still answer the phone. 

Aeroplane mode

Consider putting your handset on aeroplane mode when you know you don't need it. This is especially useful for when you're in areas where the signal is generally poor or non-existent, as your device will use up its battery life in trying to find a connection. Save it the hassle and put it on aeroplane mode – and, if possible, stay out of areas of poor signal to prevent your phone working unnecessarily hard. Similarly, if you're on the tube or somewhere where you know you don't get signal, why not use aeroplane mode – it's not like you're going to receive any texts or calls, is it?

Watch the temperature

Believe it or not, your phone has feelings. Over time, higher temperatures can cause your battery to degrade much more than cooler ones. Taking care of your handset by not leaving it on a windowsill or stuck in a stuffy car could increase its lifespan noticeably. 

Update your apps

Instead of watching the little red number on your App Store steadily increase, set aside time to regularly update your apps. Not only will it improve your experience of the app, but software is often updated by app designers to use up less energy. 

Turn off unnecessary notifications

Let's face it – do you really need all of your notifications on? Some are important and it's fine to have them cropping up from time to time, but being told one of your dragon eggs has hatched or somebody has Facebook messaged you is – dare we say it – not absolutely essential. Turn off the superfluous ones and enjoy more time on your phone for more important tasks.

ChargeGenie rechargeable charger 

The only problem with some of the above tips is you feel like you can't enjoy all of the features of your smartphone. Considering the amount of money you're paying every month to enjoy a top-end phone, it does seem a little frustrating.

However, why not buy yourself the ChargeGenie Universal microUSB rechargeable charger? It's the world's first universal portable smartphone charger and it can give you up to 75 per cent more battery life, while enabling you to use your device as normal. It's a gel pad which neatly fits onto the back of your handset and can save you from the tricky situation of being low on battery and nowhere near a plug socket. What's more – it's recently been nominated in the Mobile Choice Accessories Awards for Best Charging/Power Accessory. Have a closer look at the product here and cast your vote here!

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