Tips for Longer Battery Life

Jan 15, 2017

You’re planning to meet some friends for dinner, but in the meantime, you need to take care of some errands. Unfortunately, your battery is low. It just might not make it to dinnertime… and then how will you coordinate with your friends and decide where exactly you’re meeting?

In an era where more people use smartphones than toothbrushes, we’ve all experienced the panic of a low-battery signal. Here are some great tips to help you actually save battery life in a pinch.

Disable Notifications

Let’s be honest; most of us don’t need the added stress of knowing whenever an email comes into our inbox. You can control which apps and programs send you notifications, and this can make a big difference in your battery life. Think about it: every time a notification comes, your phone rings, vibrates, and lights up. It really doesn’t have to be that way. Cut which apps can send you notifications and for the ones that you DO want notifications for, you can still change the settings so that notifications are less invasive and battery-draining.

Turn Off Background Apps

It’s the first thing we do when we’re running low on battery. See which programs are open and get rid of all the non-essentials. You can take that a step farther by modifying the default settings for each app and its background data usage. On an iPhone you can go to Settings, then General, and then Background App Refresh to determine which apps can keep accessing data in the background. On an Android, go to Settings and then Data Usage.

Just remember that if you’re going to use those apps later, it saves more battery to simply keep the app open. Closing and then restarting it is more of a drain.

Turn Off Voice Activation

If your phone is always listening for you to say “Ok Google” or call on Siri, it’s using up battery. Turn off voice activation to keep battery use conservative.

Switch from Fetch to Push

When you set up your email account on your phone, you have an option between fetch or push notifications. With fetch, your phone connects to the internet and checks for new emails every once in a while. Push works from the other direction, with the server reaching out to your device whenever there’s something new. Most sources say that the fetch setting uses more battery life because it operates more frequently.

Turn Down the Brightness, and Turn Off Vibrate

It might go without saying, but these are the quickest and most efficient ways to conserve battery life in the moment. One more thing: don't compulsively check your phone by turning it on.

When all else fails, use battery saving mode, or at last resort, airplane mode.