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Monday, May 11, 2015

28 Tips for Better iPhone Battery Life (iOS 8 Updated)



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Last Updated: April 30, 2015 

Anyone who's used an iPhone for even a few days has discovered that while these phones are more powerful, and more fun, than perhaps any other cell or smartphone, that fun comes with a price: battery life. Any halfway intensive iPhone user will recharge their phone almost every couple of days.

There are ways to conserve iPhone battery life, but many of them involve turning off services and features, which makes it a choice between all the cool things that the iPhone can do and having enough juice to do them.

Here are 28 tips to help you extend your iPhone's power, including new tips for iOS 8, which has features that can drain battery faster than earlier versions.

You don't need to follow all of these tips (what fun would that be? You'd turn off every good feature)—just use the ones that make sense for how you use your iPhone—but following some will help you conserve juice.

1.  Prevent Background App Refresh

There are a number of new features in iOS 7 designed to make your iPhone smarter and ready for you whenever you need it. One of these features is Background App Refresh. This feature looks at the apps you use most often, the time of day that you use them, and then automatically updates them for you so that the next time you open the app, the latest information is waiting for you. For instance, if you always check social media at 7:30 am, iOS 7 learns that and automatically updates your social apps before 7:30 am. Needless to say, this useful feature drains battery.

To turn it off, tap:

  1. The Settings app
  2. General
  3. Background App Refresh
  4. Either disable the feature entirely or just for specific apps that you want to use it with
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2.  Don't Automatically Update Apps

If you've got iOS 7, you can forget needing to update your apps by hand. There's now a feature that automatically updates them for you when new versions are released. Convenient, but also a drain on your battery. To only update apps when you want to, and thus manage your power better:

  1. Tap the Settings app
  2. iTunes & App Store
  3. In the Automatic Downloads section, find Updates
  4. Move slider to Off/white

3.  Don't Take App Suggestions (iOS 8)

Suggested Apps is another new feature of iOS 8 that uses your location information to figure out where you are, what you're near, and what apps—both installed on your phone and available in the App Store—might come in handy based on that information. It can be neat, but needless to say, it uses extra battery life by checking for your location, communicating with the App Store, etc.

To turn off suggested apps: 

  1. Tap the Settings app 
  2. Tap General
  3. Tap Handoff & Suggested Apps
  4. Move the My Apps and App Storesliders to Off
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4.  Turn on Auto-Brightness

The iPhone has an ambient light sensorthat adjusts the brightness of the screen based on the light around it (darker in dark places, brighter when there's more ambient light) to both save battery and make it easier to see. Turn Auto-Brightness on and you'll save energy because your screen will need to use less power in dark places.

Adjust that setting by tapping:

  1. The Settings app
  2. Display & Brightness (it's called Brightness & Wallpaper in iOS 7)
  3. Move the Auto-Brightness slider to On/green

5.  Reduce Screen Brightness

You can control the default brightness of your iPhone screen with this slider. Needless to say, the brighter the default setting for the screen, the more power it requires. Keep the screen dimmer to conserve more of your battery by tapping:

  1. The Settings app
  2. Display & Brightness (it's called Brightness & Wallpaper in iOS 7)
  3. Move the slider as needed
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6.  Stop Motion & Animations

One of the coolest features of iOS 7 is called Background Motion. It's subtle, but if you move your iPhone and watch the app icons and background image, you'll see them move slightly independently of each other, as if they're on different planes. This is called a parallax effect. It's really cool, but it also drains battery. You may want to leave it on to enjoy the effect, but if not, turn it off by tapping:

  1. The Settings app
  2. General
  3. Accessibility
  4. Reduce Motion
  5. Move slider to green/On
More »

7.  Keep Wi-Fi Off

The other kind of high-speed network that the iPhone can connect to is Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi is even faster than 3G or 4G, though it's only available where there's a hotspot (not virtually everywhere like 3G or 4G). Keeping Wi-Fi turned on at all times in hopes that an open hotspot will appear is a sure way to drain your battery life. So, unless you're using it right this second, keep Wi-Fi turned off by tapping:

  1. The Settings app
  2. Wi-Fi
  3. Slide to Off/white

You can also turn off Wi-Fi via Control Center. To access that setting, swipe up from the bottom of the screen and tap the Wi-Fi icon to gray it out.

APPLE WATCH NOTE: If you have an Apple Watch, this tip doesn't apply to you. Wi-Fi is required for many features of the Apple Watch, so you won't want to turn it off.

8.  Make Sure Personal Hotspot Is Off

This only applies if you use the iPhone's Personal Hotspot feature to share your wireless data connection with other devices. But if you do that, this tip is key.

Personal Hotspot turns your iPhone into a wireless hotspot that broadcasts its cellular data to other devices within in range. This is a tremendously useful feature, but as you may have guessed if you've read this far, it also really drains your battery. That's an acceptable trade when you're using it, but if you forget to turn it off when you're done, you'll be surprised at how quickly your battery drains.

To make sure you turn off Personal Hotspot when you're done using it:

  1. Tap the Settings app
  2. Personal Hotspot
  3. Move slider to off/white

9.  Find the Battery Killers (iOS 8)

Most of the suggestions on this list are about turning things off or not doing certain things. This one helps you discover which apps are killing your battery. In iOS 8, there's a new feature called Battery Usage that shows which apps have been sucking the most power over the last 24 hours and the last 7 days. If you start seeing an app showing up there consistently, you'll know that running the app is costing you battery life.

Access Battery Usage by tapping:

  1. The Settings app
  2. General
  3. Usage
  4. Battery Usage
On that screen, you'll sometimes see notes beneath each item (for instance, in the screenshot, notice "Low Signal" under Personal Hotspot). This note provides more detail on why the app drained so much battery and can suggest ways for you to fix it.

10.  Turn Off Location Services

One of the coolest features of the iPhone is its built-in GPS. This allows your phone to know where you are and give you exact driving directions, give that information to apps that help you find restaurants, and more. But, like any service that sends data over a network, it needs battery power to work. If you're not using Location Services, and don't plan to right away, turn them off and save some power.

Turn off Location Services by tapping:

  1. The Settings app
  2. Privacy
  3. Location Services
  4. Slide to Off/white
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