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HOW TO: Save battery power on your Android phone

Tech and Innovation

Posted on April 11, 2012

3 min read

Android continues to offer more features, functionality, and great integration of web services.  For all those Android users who have ever wondered – “How can I get just a little bit more power from my Android battery”, we have a few tips* below to help you proactively and intelligently manage your battery life.

1. Check Battery Usage

The first step is simple, find out what is actually hogging your battery life and then do something about it. The easiest way to check your battery usage is by going into your settings.

  • On an Android 2.3 device. You need to click on Settings  -> About Phone-> Battery Usage
  • On an Android 4.0 device. You need to click on Settings  -> Battery (Which sits under the device sub-section of the screen.)

Telstra Exchange battery indicator

2. Turn down the screen brightness

As you can see from the above screenshots, the ‘Display’ is a big battery hog. Only turn this down if you have good lighting around you to see your screen.

  • On an Android 2.3 device and Android 4.0 device you can easily turn down your screen brightness by clicking on ‘Display’ in settings then hitting Brightness and adjusting it on the slider.

Telstra Exchange brightness

3. Use dark-themed apps

If you are happy to turn your screen brightness down it makes sense to use apps which utilise blacks and darker colours. Two things I do regularly on my phone are: Google Searches and reading books. For Google searching, I have found a great replacement app called ‘Black Google’ which I downloaded by entering in the search term ‘bGoog’. This app replaces my Google Search widget with a completely black theme.  Also if you like to read books like me, there should be an option in your book reading app to change the theme to “Night”. In Google’s ‘Play Books’ you can access this feature through the settings menu.

4. Disable Auto-Sync

This is an easy task and can save a lot of battery life depending on how many emails you get, simply jump into Settings  -> Accounts and untick ‘Auto-Sync’. The idea behind turning this off is to ensure that apps are not constantly pushing information to your device. This will also mean you will have to check your email manually.

  • On an Android 2.3 device: You need to click on Settings -> Accounts and Sync ->Uncheck the Auto-Sync button
  • On an Android 4.0 device: You need to click on Settings -> Accounts & Sync -> Switch the Sync button from On to Off which sits next to the Heading

Telstra Exchange accounts

5. Download paid apps

A recent issue which has been identified is that apps which showcase ads are sucking up a lot of battery life. Although it saves you money by not paying for an app, if you play Angry Birds or Draw Something on a regular basis I would recommend switching to the paid apps. Not only will you get more options, but also you will use less battery.

*This blog is recommended for those who are using Android 2.3 and up.

If you are reading this and know of more battery saving tips, you can list yours in the comments below.

Tags: Android, how to,