Let's set the scene: you haven’t charged your phone all day and now you have to trapse to an unknown area of town for a social engagement with only five percent battery (mission accepted). You stare at the number in the top right of the screen, willing it not to resume its countdown. You've switched on Low Battery Mode and you estimate you have 10 minutes before its game over, so you are prudent. Lingering on Google Maps will chew up your battery, so you screenshot your route, close the app and turn down the brightness. You send a quick SOS text to your friend giving them your location because the inevitable moment when your phone will die is fast-approaching. You storm down the pavement, feeling on-edge and disconnected from the world, checking the time every so often, and silently vowing to yourself that you’ll never again get into this position. You know this scenario all too well.
It seems that this problem is an old-fashioned one; surely by 2016 we’d have eternal battery life and wouldn’t have to lug around chargers and portable charging stations, but alas we do. Thankfully though, there are steps you can take to make your precious battery life last longer throughout the day if you know you won’t be able to plug-in.
1. Turn On Low Battery Mode
This is Apple’s best new addition, for sure. Low Battery Mode disables Email Fetch, Hey Siri, Background App Refresh, automatic downloads and visual effects. Apple recommend that you don’t switch on Low Battery Mode until your battery goes below 20 percent as it make cause some tasks longer to update or complete. Yet, some tech wizards have tested the implications of turning it on as soon as you set off in the morning. One study found that Low Battery Mode uses only 70 percent of the power in standard mode, and makes the phone last 1.43 times longer. In another study an iPhone was tested and found that it 'chewed through battery 38.7 percent slower when in low power mode'. That’s a whole lot of difference.
2. Turn Down The Brightness
We all know this one, but it’s a biggie. The brighter your screen, the more battery it’s using. Simple. Enabling Auto-Brightness will also ensure that your screen isn’t too bright when it doesn’t have to be. Go to Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto-Brightness.
3. Decrease Auto-Lock Timeout
Auto-Lock is how quickly your phone locks when you're inactive. The quicker it locks the less time the screen is bright, therefore less time battery is used. Go to Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto-Lock, and voila. Note: when your phone is on Low Battery Mode it automatically sets Auto-Lock Timeout to 30 seconds.
4. Disable Background Refresh
You can stop apps from refreshing themselves automatically, even when not in Low Battery Mode, by going to Settings > General > Background App Refresh. This will save a whole lot of battery even when you’re not on your phone.
5. Turn Down The Volume
The audio impact you are using can also affect your phone’s battery life, so you should consider turning down the volume. You can even set a volume limit by going on Settings > Music > Volume Limit. Another thing you can do is turn off EQ altogether (EQ is the equalizer that emphasises bass notes and frequencies) as this will save battery.
6. Turn Off iCloud Backup
Just like Background App Refresh, iCloud performs backups automatically to save our precious data. However, there may be things that iCloud is backing up that is unnecessary, so go into Settings > iCloud and unclick anything you aren’t bothered about saving.
7. Reduce Push Notifications
Receiving push notifications uses more battery than you may realise (again it comes down to the increase in screen brightness). So, you should consider going through your apps on Settings > Notifications, and anything you don’t feel like you need to be notified for click the app and turn off Allow Notifications.
8. Turn Off Vibrate
If you’re going fully prudent in your endeavour to save battery life, then you may consider turning off vibrate when you get alerts (vibration is only really necessary when your phone is on silent anyway). Go to Settings > Sounds and turn off Vibrate on Ring, and then Settings > Sound > Textone > Vibration > None.
9. Turn Off Bluetooth
You don’t need Bluetooth on unless you’re using it, so swipe up from the bottom of your screen to open the Control Centre, and unclick the Bluetooth icon.
10. Turn Off Parallax
This is a good one. A recent iPhone software update introduced moving and dynamic wallpapers, but you’ve guessed it, they drain your battery. If you’re not really fussed about the aesthetic, or you've played with it so many times that it's no longer fun, then switch it off and opt for a still photo. Go to Settings > General > Accessibility and switch on Reduce Motion. Then go to Settings > Wallpapers & Brightness > Choose Wallpaper and choose something from Stills or from your photo albums.
11. Turn On Airplane Mode
An obvious one, but one that shouldn’t be overlooked. Whenever you’re in an area that has terrible reception, the tube for example, turn on Airplane mode to save your phone searching for networks and eating up your battery.
Does Charging Your Phone Overnight Kill The Battery?
If you've ever heard the tale that charging your iPhone overnight is bad for your battery - think again. Tech writer Jesse Hollington revealed on Quora that overnight charging does nothing to damage your phone. 'You simply can't overcharge an iPhone, or any other modern electronic device, for that matter,' he wrote. 'When your iPhone is plugged in and reaches 100 percent, it switches to external power and simply runs from that.' So there's that.
For tech-lovers, here are some more handy tips: