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5 easy ways to boost your Android phone's battery life

Ben Patterson | Aug. 26, 2015
These set-'em-and-forget-'em settings will help keep your Android phone up and running from daybreak to lights-out.

Set “Battery Saver” mode to switch on automatically

Even when it’s sitting quietly in your pocket, your Android phone is constantly checking your email, syncing your Google account data, and juggling the activity of all your various background apps. That’s a lot of gears turning every minute of every day, and it all consumes battery power—or at least, it does whenever your handset isn’t plugged into a charger.

You can set Battery Saver mode to switch itself on if your phone’s battery is about to flatline.

That’s why I’m a fan of Lollipop’s “Battery Saver” mode, which puts your Android phone into a low-power state whenever you need to wring a little extra juice out of your handset’s battery. When Battery Saver mode is on, your phone will stop its obsessive email checking, cease all its vibrating, and keep background data use at an absolute minimum. Your device will feel awfully sluggish whenever Battery Saver mode is on, but at least it won’t be as dead as a doornail.

You can turn on Battery Saver mode any time you want, but there’s also a setting that’ll switch it on automatically if your phone’s battery is about to flatline.

Tap Settings > Battery, tap the three-dot menu button in the top-right corner of the screen, then tap Battery saver. Leave the main "Battery saver” toggle in the off position, tap Turn on automatically, then pick a setting: either “at 5% battery” or “at 15% percent battery.”

Set location data to power-saving mode

Sure, you can set your Android phone to work triple-time—using GPS, Wi-Fi and cellular all at once—to determine its exact location, but you’ll pay a premium in terms of battery life.

Set location data to power-saving mode
Unless you really need pinpoint location accuracy, you can probably get away with switching your phone’s Location mode to the “battery saving” setting.

Unless you really need pinpoint location accuracy, you can probably get away with turning off your phone’s power-hogging GPS sensor and relying on just cellular and nearby Wi-Fi networks to triangulate where you are.

To do so, tap Settings > Location > Mode, then tap Battery saving.

Back up your Google Photos only while your handset is charging

One of the first things the new Google Photos app will ask you is whether you’d like your snapshots to be automatically backed up online. Tap OK, and Google Photos will start backing up your pictures in the background—and by default, it’ll only do so while you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network.


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