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How to run battery diagnostics on your Pixel 8

The latest Pixel release from Google includes a feature that allows you to run diagnostics to find out what might be causing problems with premature battery drainage.
Written by Jack Wallen, Contributing Writer
Google Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro
June Wan/ZDNET

I've been using my Pixel 8 Pro for a couple of weeks now and I become more convinced this is the best Pixel that Google has released to date. It's not that it's a gigantic leap forward from the Pixel 7 Pro, but there are enough small changes that come together to make the whole a very impressive feat. 

Not only is the headset easier to hold, but the speed of the processor is considerably more powerful than its predecessor. The display is easier to read, and all the little touches that come with Android 14 really seal the deal.

Also: 5 quick tips to strengthen your Android phone security today

As far as battery life is concerned, I'm happy to report that the Pixel 8 Pro beats the Pixel 7 Pro handily. Once I had all the apps updated (especially Spotify), I found I was reaching the end of the day with anywhere between 70% and 80% of my battery remaining. With my Pixel 7 Pro, I could regularly see between 50% and 70% of battery life left before placing the phone on the charger. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that I retire my phone fairly early every day. My Pixel is usually on its stand by 7 p.m. every day. So, if your day ends well after that, don't expect to see 70-80% of your battery life remaining.

Anyone who's ever used the same phone for more than a year knows that battery life does decline. Google anticipated this issue with the Pixel 8 Pro and Android 14, and has added a handy battery diagnostics tool. This feature is only available to Pixel 8 phones, so even if you have a Pixel 7 with Android 14, you won't find the diagnostics tool available.

Also: How to add reading mode to your Android devices

Now, before we continue, this feature isn't so much a diagnostic tool as a troubleshooting helper. It doesn't actually run tests against your battery. Instead, what it does is help you narrow down the problem, based on the most common issues that cause problems with Pixel phone batteries.

So, if you have a Pixel 8/Pixel 8 Pro, and you want to check your battery, let me show you how.

How to run battery diagnostics on Pixel 8 

What you'll need: To run battery diagnostics, you must have either a Pixel 8 or Pixel 8 Pro. That's it. Let's diagnose your battery.

1. Open Android settings

Log into your Pixel 8 and pull the Notification Shade down twice. At the bottom of the Shade, tap the gear icon to open the Settings app.

The Settings gear icon in the Android 14 Notification Shade.

You can also access Settings by tapping the Settings launcher in the App Drawer.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

2. Open Battery settings

Scroll down until you see Battery and tap the entry.

The Battery entry in Android 14 Settings.

The Battery entry also displays how much juice your phone has remaining.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

3. Open Battery Diagnostics

Beneath the Battery widget entry, you'll see Battery diagnostics. Tap that to open the testing tool.

The Battery Diagnostics entry.

You're almost there.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

4. Check your battery

On the Battery diagnostics page, you'll find four different tests you can run:

  • Battery draining too quickly
  • Phone is very warm
  • Issue with charging
  • Other issue

Let's say you're finding the battery isn't lasting nearly as long as it should. For that, tap Battery draining too quickly. You will then be prompted to allow Pixel Troubleshooting to determine if there's a problem. Tap Allow to continue to the test.

The Battery Diagnostics page.

The different battery tests you can run on Android 14.

Screenshot by Jack Wallen/ZDNET

5. Select an option

On the next page, you'll see two suggestions to help prevent premature battery drainage, which are Screen display and Apps using more battery. For example, if you tap Screen display, you'll be presented with two options:

  • Turn on dark theme
  • Turn off smooth display

Tap either one of those options and it will take you to the location in Settings where you can take care of the problem. If you tap Apps using more battery, you'll be taken to the Battery usage page, where you can see which apps are using the majority of your battery. You can then take action and either stop the offending app, or -- such as in my case with Spotify -- head to the Google Play Store and upgrade the app in question.

Also: How to add local music files to Spotify on Android

You'll also find links on this page to more articles on how to improve your battery life.

In my opinion, the feature needs a name change because it's not so much a diagnostics tool but a help page to lead you to common issues that cause battery drainage. The good thing is that this feature does direct you to the issues that tend to always be the cause. 

Also: How to transfer data from Android to an iPhone

If you find your Pixel 8 phone battery is not lasting all day, my advice is to check out this page and follow the advice you are given. The chances are pretty good the page will help you solve your problem.

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