If you’re recently made the leap from dumb phone to smartphone, you may be substantially unimpressed with your phone’s battery life. While the cell phones of yesteryear could be left sitting on your desk for a week without ever needing a charge, smartphones need to be charged practically every day. But why?
The answer is simple: smartphones use more energy than dumb phones. Almost every feature of your phone plays a part in draining your battery. From WiFi to GPS, your phone has a variety of features that require energy to work properly. By learning how to control our smartphones energy use, you can prolong your battery life.
Short-Term Battery Life
Adjust your settings: if you look in your settings menu, you should have an option
that’s called “Battery Saver”, “Power Saver” or something very similar; every phone is different. Adjust these power settings to provide optimum battery life throughout the day.
• Adjust your phone: turn off automatic screen brightness, turn off the vibrate feature and turn off any extras you aren’t currently using: WiFi, Bluetooth, data and GPS are the most common battery drainers. The general rule of thumb when it comes to your smartphone’s features is this: when you aren’t using it, turn it off.
• Until you get used to controlling your battery life, download one of the many great apps available that can help you monitor your battery life.
Long-Term Battery Life
• Temperatures: nothing will ruin a battery faster than extreme temperatures. Never leave your phone sitting in the car during the heat of the summer or the freezing cold of the winter.
• Cases: avoid charging your battery with your phone’s case on. To charge your battery, and prevent overheating, remove the phone’s case. Remove your case from time to time and blow your phone out with the same compressed air you use for your computer’s keyboard. This will remove any dust and prevent it from building up inside of your phone’s housing.
• Charging: smartphones come with lithium batteries and there are many myths surrounding such energy providers. While it is recommended that you put your battery through one full charge/discharge cycle initially, you don’t have to do this again. A lithium ion battery comes with a life of its own: between 500 and 1000 charge cycles. While there are things you can do to reach the higher number of cycles, your battery will eventually die no matter what you do.
• Contacts: both your battery and your phone have contacts that meet to power your phone when the battery is inserted. Clean these contacts occasionally to ensure proper energy transfer. If you notice a bit of corrosion on the metals, use acetone nail polish remover to clean your contacts. Use a Q-tip and a steady hand; acetone dissolves plastic.
By treating your battery with common sense and respect, you can be certain that it will give you at least a full day of power and last well over a couple of years. Be sure to read your phone’s owner’s manual for more battery saving tips!
Author Stephanie Sanders is a communications consultant and writes for a mobile phone site in the UK, offering all the latest phones and plans.