How do you get the best battery life from your device? It's a question that's plagued us ever since we swapped our Nokias for smartphones. Those old bricks lasted for days and days, but today you'd be lucky to get 10 hours of continuous use from your smartphone. What's going on here? How can we finally solve the battery problem? Here are a few lesser-known Android battery saver tips:
Don't Download Ad-Supported Apps
Photo from TalkAndroid.com
It sounds a bit strange, but buying paid apps could significantly increase your battery life. In an article published in New Scientist, researchers found that up to 75% of the energy used by free apps is spent downloading ads or uploading user data for advertising purposes. Angry Birds, for example, only uses 20% of its power to run its game and 45% to locate users and download those annoying location-specific pop-up ads.
Buy an Android Battery Saver App
Another way to protect yourself against excessive battery drain is to download a battery-saving app.
Juice Defender is probably the most popular and extensive. When the screen is asleep, Juice Defender can turn off all data connections, including 3G and WiFi. The app can even do things like turn off data usage entirely at night or disable data and WiFi services if the battery dips below 20% power.
Another Android battery saver app that works well is called GreenPower. Like Juice Defender, GreenPower allows you to manage your WiFi, mobile data and Bluetooth connections to find the optimal recipe for a long-lasting battery. But GreenPower goes beyond with a very well-designed widget and a much more aesthetically pleasing options menu. We find it definitely much more user friendly than Juice Defender.
Buy a Razr Maxx, Samsung Galaxy S3 or Galaxy Note
These phones have the highest ranking when it comes to battery life. Of course, the Razr Maxx truly shines with a whopping 20 hours of talk time, but the Galaxy S3 also gets a respectable 10 hours while the Galaxy Note lasts 12 (although it's not as long-lasting when it comes to browsing the Internet). You wouldn't expect the Galaxy Note to do well given its enormous screen, but Samsung was careful to install an equally large 2,500 mAh battery on this model. HTC models, and the Galaxy Nexus perform more poorly. Just something to keep in mind.
Root Your Phone, Install SetCPU
The users with the most impressive battery results download and install programs like SetCPU to "underclock" their CPU, allowing it to drain less battery as it runs. One user also recommend a program called "Battery Calibration" which shuts off the phone when battery life reaches 1% instead of 20%, to extend the reach of your battery. Both of these Android battery saver apps require root access.
Don't Install Bright Wallpapers
By now we all know that live wallpapers are a huge drain on battery life. But what you may not know is that lighter-colored homescreen wallpapers use more battery power than darker wallpapers. We've seen a difference of almost 3 to 4 extra hours of battery life a day after installing a darker homescreen!
Buy This Umbrella
Vodafone has created an umbrella that can store charge for your Android while also enhancing signal reception. With 12 solar panels, it won't be long before that walk across the park has generated a significant amount of juice. Just plug your phone into the handle, and you're good to go. Hey, you may look ridiculous but no one said reducing your carbon footprint was going to be glamorous.