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10 ways to boost your smartphone's battery life

Robert Strohmeyer | June 6, 2011
These simple tips, tricks, and apps will help keep your mobile juiced up and ready for action.


7. Don't Use Vibrate

Prefer to have your phone alert you to incoming calls by vibrating rather than playing a ringtone? We understand the inclination; unfortunately, vibrating uses much more power than playing a ringtone does. After all, a ringtone only has to make a tiny membrane in your phone's speaker vibrate enough to produce sound. In contrast, the vibration motor swings a small weight around to make your whole phone shake--and that process takes a lot more juice. If you don't want to be disturbed audibly, consider turning off all notifications and leave the phone in view so you can see when a new call is coming in. This approach is as courteous to your battery as it is to your friends and neighbors.

8. Turn Off Nonessential Notifications

It seems as though almost every app in the app store now polls the Internet in search of updates, news, messages, and other information. When it finds something, the app may chime, light up your screen and display a message, make your LED blink, or do all of the above. And all of these things consume energy. Admittedly you likely don't want to turn off notifications about new text messages or missed calls, but you don't need to be instantly alerted that radboy84 has just bested your score at Booty Blast. Turning off superfluous notifications will help your battery last a little longer, and it will eliminate pointless distractions throughout your day.

9. Power Saver Mode for Android

Newer Android phones include a Power Saver mode that helps manage the phone's various power-sapping features for you. Power Saver mode automatically prevents your apps from updating in the background, dims your screen, reduces the screen timeout setting, disables on-screen animations, and turns off vibration. By default, this mode usually turns on when your battery level drops to 20 percent, but you can set it to kick in at 30 percent instead. And the sooner the phone switches to Power Saver mode, the longer its battery will last.

10. JuiceDefender for Android

By manually adjusting all of your phone's settings over the course of a day, you may be able to squeeze a few extra usable hours out of your battery. But if the effort sounds too cumbersome to you, consider downloading an app that manages your battery for you. On Android phones, we've seen great results from JuiceDefender, which automatically toggles your radios on and off and manages your phone's CPU usage to optimize your battery life moment-to-moment.

 

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