You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

Summary: During the past week I've received an increasing number of emails from readers asking for tips on how to squeeze more minutes out of their iPhone battery. I think it's because Thanksgiving is around the corner and people are preparing to spend more of their lives suck in cars, at airports, in planes and generally away from their base of operations.

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This kicks off a new series of posts I'm planning based on questions and feedback I get from readers. "You asked for it" will give you the answers to the questions YOU want answered. Got a question? Drop me a note using the contact form link below, or via Twitter.

During the past week I've received an increasing number of emails from readers asking for tips on how to squeeze more minutes out of their iPhone battery. I think it's because Thanksgiving is around the corner and people are preparing to spend more of their lives stuck in cars, at airports, in planes and generally away from their base of operations.

Here's what I do to get more out of my iPhone's battery:

Note: All screenshots start in the Setting app.

Note 2: Because of the number of screenshots on this page I've broken this post into two. If you'd like to see it all on one page for printing or saving, click here.

  • Never pass up an opportunity to charge up! That means carrying a charger with you (or at the very least an iPod USB cable) and having a car cord handy when on the road. Before I had a iPhone I owned a Nokia E71 and I could get days of standby out of that thing because I only used it for calls and texts and the occasional bit of web browsing and tweeting (I'd also swapped out the stock battery for a Mugen Power battery, which helped a lot).
  • Drop the screen brightness. I find that doing this gives me noticeable extra minutes from the handset.
  • Set the handset to Auto Lock after 1 minute. Again, over the course of a day this makes quite a difference.
  • Selectively turn on the radios. If you don't need WiFi or Bluetooth or 3G, turn them off! I find that WiFi and Bluetooth put an appreciable drain on the battery, more so when the handset is continually scanning for WiFi points to connect to.WiFi

    Bluetooth

    3G

Next -->

  • Use Airplane Mode to turn off all radios. This is a kill-switch for all the radios.
  • Switch off Location Services. Again, turn it on when you need it. I know it's a hassle ...
  • Switch off Push Notifications on applications. Again, this is something that runs regularly in the background with no regard for your battery life.
  • Turn off Push on email accounts, calendars and contacts. Again, only turn on when required.
  • Kill any apps working in the background. Double-press the Home button to bring up the multitasking dock and then hold down the screen until the icons start to jiggle, then kill any apps that might be working in the background - apps such as Skype and Pandora are likely suspects.
  • Last resort - turn off the handset! Press and hold the top button until the Slide to power off instruction appears, then slide to power off. The handset still used some battery in this state, but not much.
  • Carry a recharge with you! If you haven't got access to a power outlet or a car charger then there are quite a few third-party iPhone chargers out there with built-in battery packs. You could go form something like the ZAGGsparq 2.0 which features USB ports and will charge the iPhone, the iPad and other USB devices, or something smaller like the Phillips JumpStart which fits onto the iPhone. Both will give your iPhone battery a power boost and help keep you and your phone going for longer.

Happy travels!

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Topics: Hardware, iPhone, Mobility

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11 comments
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  • A copy and paste article from tipb web site

    Come on !
    Look at the article published a day earlier, on this web site, http://www.tipb.com/2010/11/17/tip-increase-iphones-battery-life/

    You did screen shots of the article of tipb, this is not journalism. Please state your source when signing an article like this.

    Thanks!
    papyrus100
    • RE: You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

      @papyrus100 Kinda odd since I hadn't see that post before, and that the tips aren't all the same, but thanks for posting the link since I didn't mention using headphones rather than the internal speaker. I'm not sure disabling keyboard sounds would make any difference but that's also a good tip.
      Adrian Kingsley-Hughes
  • I don't understand

    Why don't you just replace the battery with a larger one?
    My samsung galaxy s has a1500mAh and I've ordered a3600 mAh one.
    Dietrich T. Schmitz, ~ Your Linux Advocate
    • RE: You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz, Your Linux Advocate<br><br>While I detect a hint of sarcasm, there's honestly no need. My iPhone 4 lasts 2 to 3 times as long as my previous Galaxy S Epic *before* applying any of these tips (except turning off the BT stack).
      Playdrv4me
      • Keep rationalizing the irrational.

        @Playdrv4me
        nt
        Dietrich T. Schmitz, ~ Your Linux Advocate
    • RE: You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

      @Dietrich T. Schmitz, Your Linux Advocate

      Good idea. I'll order one from [u]www.mophie.com[/u].
      msalzberg
  • Another VERY poor article. (ZDNet just gets worse and worse)

    Another great ZDNet story: Save battery by turning off all of your phones features and software.... and finally... turn off the phone itself.

    "Recharge the battery" is really a "battery saving tip"?

    Gee thanks.
    CathyCC
  • RE: You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

    Thanksgiving is around the corner and people are preparing to spend more of their lives suck in cars, at airports, in planes and generally away from their base of operations.

    "suck in cars ....". What were you thinking?? :-)
    DraXkenLSI
  • AMOLED nice but power consumer

    Turn off active wallpapers and use 'black' wallpaper.
    Dietrich T. Schmitz, ~ Your Linux Advocate
  • RE: You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

    Another option: Jailbreak.<br>Most of these settings can be placed on a page or SBS to allow easy access.<br><br>For turning on/off these features, I find the opportunistic plugin is a better choice and less hassle.<br><br>For another charging option, buy an XtremeMac Incharge Portable Unit - costs about $50 (US) and I can get two to three full recharges from it - It also can be used as your charge plugin while near an outlet. Much more durable than the unit you get with these idevices.
    rhonin
  • RE: You asked for it - iPhone battery saving tips

    great story! there's also <a href="http://bGoog.com">black google mobile</a> that's a battery saving search. it load's faster and uses less bandwidth (aka saves money).
    JenniferJJ