Losing Steam: Tips and Tricks to Preserving Battery Life on Your Smartphone

It is undoubtedly one of the biggest weaknesses to the mobile computers we call smartphones. Yes, they have advanced by leaps and bounds in terms of becoming smaller and smaller whilst rivalling the speed of larger digital cousins like netbooks and tablets. The fact that they fit in the pocket means that manufacturers outfit them with more communications protocols, like the emerging standard of Near Field Communications (NFC) which allows you leave home without ever taking your wallet.

Yet, while Moore’s Law marches on and computational power has shown no sign of letting up from the exponential growth of approximately doubling every 18 months, battery life has yet to see a major breakthrough that will let us use this power without being very mindful of where the nearest outlet is, if not now then in a few hours. It doesn’t help that batteries gradually die a slow death within a matter of a couple of years for most smart phones.

With all that in mind, what are some simple tips to follow that can increase the lifespan of your phone?

Turn Down the Brightness

This might seem like a no-brainer, and it is. You don’t need to bleed your eyes dry with all that light emanating from your Super AMOLED+ screen, even if the colours and resolution are beautiful. Disabling auto brightness settings also helps with battery life, as does choosing a dark background or theme.

Turn Off Notifications

Oftentimes, notifications qualify more as spam than actual useful pieces of information. Check your system settings to see what apps have permission for notifications, and only keep what is necessary.

Turn Off Animations

If you have an older phone, or if you don’t care about flashy effects, it is possible with both iPhone and Android systems to disable these battery suckers by going into system settings or ‘Developer Mode’ and disabling animations, depending on which system you are using.

Buy an Extra Battery or Battery Pack

While this is not a tweak, it is something that comes in handy when you just can’t squeeze enough juice out of your current one. They’re usually small enough to not be a nuisance to simply throw in your bag and forget about until you need it.