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Jul 12

Extend your Battery Life

Low Bat

We’ve all seen it.  You pull out your phone, and suddenly that low battery signal shows up.  You scratch your head and wonder… “I didn’t use it that much today.  Why is my battery almost drained?

Well, battery life is based on more than simple usage.  Whether you’re talking or browsing on your phone, there’s a lot of other activities going on in the background that can affect the life of the battery.  Let me show you some of the top battery drainers that I’ve found.

First, I love a bright, crisp screen.  As I get older it gets harder and harder to see things that aren’t “lit” properly.  But screen brightness is probably the biggest drain on your battery that you’ll find (other than excessive browsing or talking, naturally). If you find your battery draining faster than you’d like. check the screen brightness…

Brightness

Bring the brightness level down and if you can, set Auto-Brightness to off.  You’ll be amazed at the difference.

In the same vein as brightness, is leaving the screen on all the time.  Get used to 2 things to help here.  First, adjust the time until the screen goes dark using auto lock in the General Settings.

Auto Lock

The shorter the time period, the faster the screen goes dark.  But if one minute isn’t fast enough or you typically drop your phone into your pocket or purse, then get in the habit of hitting the lock button when you put the phone away.
Power switch

This will lock the phone, shutting off the screen immediately, and as a benefit will significantly decrease the chances of a pocket dial or text.

Next, lets talk about location services and notifications.  When you install an app it typically asks you if it can use your location and whether it can notify you of things.  JUST SAY NO… unless of course it’s something that absolutely requires one of those two services, like maps, Google Search, weather and find my phone.  The more things that are tracking your location and telling you what’s going on, the more the battery is used.  Go into your settings and take a look at what notification and location services are being used by what apps, and turn off anything that’s not necessary.

Notifications

Location

There’s still a few more things to look at.  The more frequently you check your mail, the more battery will be used… and more often than not, you’ve set your mail to be checked automatically.

Fetch Mail

If you’re not obsessive about email set it to manually… in fact, set it to manually anyway.  When you open your mail app it’ll automatically go out and fetch your mail for you.  However, if your business requires instant notification and access to email, set it to as long or as short as you feel is best for you.

Finally, apps — I didn’t realize this, but there’s some apps out there that have an effect on battery performance.  A friend of mine who writes the blog for the Solid Signal company (www.solidsignal.com) recently posted a blog entry that fascinated me.  Rather than paraphrase it, here’s a link to his post. I think you’ll find it very interesting.

Many of the same tips apply to the iPad or tablets so don’t be afraid to try them there as well.

Now, my standard disclaimer.  I use an iPhone.  I’ve always used an iPhone.  I’ve never owned an Android or Windows phone.  In fact, I haven’t even used one enough to tell someone else how to use it.  But, I suspect that a lot of these tips will work for you Android folks as well.  In any event, just click here for some other links that can help you regardless of the type of phone you use.

Thanks for reading, and as always be sure to share this great info with your friends through Facebook, Twitter or email!

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