Getting the Most Out Of Your Android Battery

by Android Tips on April 25, 2012

It is a problem that all smartphone users have to deal on a daily basis. The price we have paid for turning our mobile phones into mini net books. This is a real bitter pill when you think back how long a battery used to last on the ‘old school’ phones. For those of us that can remember to good old days of phones like the Nokia 3210 will remember that you could easily squeeze out five days out of the battery. Now you are lucky with heavy use to get five hours.

This is not just a symptom of Android phones it is also a problem with iPhone’s. I used to an iPhone but I can’t remember where t find some of the setting I mention later so I couldn’t include it in my list. All of these changes are really simple to do and I have not included anything that requires you to get too nerdy. Read through the list make the changes and you will find yourself holding a smartphone that may give you and extra hour or so in battery life.

Check your usage

These setting details are how they are displayed on a HTC Desire, they may be slightly different on a different brand. Being Android however the setting will be found roughly in the same location. To find out what is actually sucking all the power from your phone you need to the ‘battery usage’ screen. To find it go to ‘settings’, ‘about phone’, ‘battery usage’.

This will show that the number one culprit is the screen noramlly by quite some distance; it is a big power drain, especially in the newer larger screen phones. To get the most out of your phone you need to make sure that the screen is set to use the minimum of power.

Many phones will have an auto adjust feature, turn this off as it will use more power than simply turning the brightness level down manually. Unless you are sitting in the bright sunshine you should only need to have your screen at 10-20%.

Making this one change alone will have a noticeable effect of the battery life. I added a settings widget to my home screen so that I could quickly up the brightness levels when I needed to.

Security

Screen timeout is another major factor. Is it really necessary to have your screen on for 1 minute after you have put it in your pocket? Change the time to something like 10 – 20 seconds. All those minutes with your screen is glowing in your pocket s a waste of power.

Internet

One simply rule, keep it turned off. All that background data synced is battery hungry. Turn it on and enjoy having the internet out and about, but be sensible. When you are sitting at your desk at work do you really need emails being picked up by your phone! The same goes for WiFi, when in a WiFi zone it will save you battery as WiFi is less power hungry than 3G. However when you are not in range of a hotspot the phone is constantly searching for one. The searching for one uses up vital power.

Both of these can be changed via a widget, add the setting widget to one of your screens for easy access.

GPS

Great as it is that you can now find out where you are in the world with your mobiles GPS. You may thing that you only use GPA when using apps like maps or navigation. Well not quite. Social apps like Facebook and even taking a photo use GPS. Turn it off unit you actually need it.

Can’t be bothered

This sounds like it could be achievable, after all they can be changed using a really simple widget. However, the reality is that even with the best intentions you will start to forget. Luckily Google Play has a host of apps that will automate this all for you. Using a variety of techniques s they can change setting based on time of the day and location.

I use Juice Defender and it basically scans your usage and then will turn off as much as it can without you having to think about it.

Written on behalf of Floors2 Go – Laminate Floor Specialists

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