One of the biggest complaints of the iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, and the iPhone 5 is the battery life – it runs out too fast. Although the iPhone 5 made a slight improvement in overall battery life over its predecessors, it often won’t last you through the day with heavy usage. My hope is that Apple will significantly improve the battery life in future generations of the iPhone – iPhone 5S and iPhone 6. But until that happens, here are a few ways for how to improve the battery life on your current iOS device.
1. Turn down the screen brightness
By default, the screen on your iDevice is set to adjust its brightness levels according to the ambient light around. If you are in bright sunshine, the screen automatically brightens to make it easier to see. The opposite happens when you are using your phone at night in complete darkness – your screen dims significantly. You can, however, set the baseline lower so that the brightest the screen gets is lower than 100%. Rhett Allain, an associate physics professor at Southeastern Louisiana University, recently conducted a scientific study of screen brightness and its affect on battery life in iOS devices. The results are very clear – it makes a big difference (Click here to read the full article on wired.com’s site – Does Decreased Brightness Increase Your Phone’s Battery Life?). So, based on the results of the experiment, you can save close to 3 hours of battery life on your iPhone if you turn the screen brightness down to the lowest level. However, this is typically a little too dim to see it clearly. So, I recommend setting the brightness somewhere at the 40-50% level. Here is how:
Open the Preferences App on your device in a brightly lighted room. Then, navigate to Brightness & Wallpaper and adjust the brightness slider to half or a little below half. This could give you an additional 1-2 hours of battery life, depending on usage.
2. Set Auto-Lock to 1 Minute
This is another significant battery saving tip and trick that will improve the battery life on your iPhone, iPad (Mini), or iPod Touch. The display on a smartphone is one of the biggest consumers of battery life. So, every minute the display gets left on unnecessarily will cause drain on the battery. I recommend that people set the Auto-Lock to the minimum at 1 minute. Here is how to do this:
Open the Preferences App. Navigate to General –> Auto-Lock. Make sure the Auto-Lock is set to 1 Minute.
3. Close all apps from Multitasking Tray
Another big drain on battery life is open apps that are no longer being used. Every time you open an app, it gets put into a queue of most recently used apps in the multi-tasking tray (access the multitasking tray by double tapping the Home Button when you’re iDevice is unlocked). Most apps are designed to preserve the most recent state of the app for some time to give you quick multitasking access to where you left off in the app. However, some apps, either due to bugs or other issues, continue to use your device’s battery resources long after you have stopped using the app. To prevent this and to keep your iPhone, iPad (Mini), and iPod Touch running at its optimum speed, I suggest closing all apps in the multitasking tray at least once per week. Doing a hard reset is a good idea too. Here is an article that explains more on how and why you should do this: Close Multitasking Apps and Perform Hard Reset Weekly on your iOS Device. Here is how to close apps from the multitasking tray:
Double tap your home button when your device is unlocked to reveal the Multitasking Tray. Then, tap and hold on the most recent app opened. Once the app starts to shake and a little red minus sign appears in the upper left corner of the app, release your finger. Then, tap on the little red minus sign to close the app from the multitasking tray. Tap quickly over the minus sign to quickly close multiple apps. Performing this simple task weekly should give you increased battery life overall.
If these tips and tricks for increasing battery life on your iOS device are still not enough, you can always buy an iPhone Battery Case or an external battery. These cases and external batteries will significantly extend the battery life your iPhone, iPad (Mini), or iPod Touch. Here are a couple of recommendations with direct links to Amazon:
- iPhone 4 and 4S – New Trent Case with Extended Rechargeable Battery Juice Case 2100mAh for iPhone 4 and 4S
- iPhone 5 – Mophie Juice Pack Helium Battery Pack Case for iPhone 5
- All Devices – New Trent iGeek IMP99D/NT99D 9900mAh External Battery Pack (this case will give you 45 hours of continuous movie watching on your iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, and iPhone 5. It will give a 60% additional charge for the most recent iPad (4th Gen).
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