You forgot to plug your phone in last night, and you’re starting the work day with only 20 percent battery life. It’s a situation that’s happened to everyone, and it’s no fun at all. But with some battery-saving tricks up your sleeve, you can make minimal battery life last you through the workday. Plus, when you use these tricks all the time, you’ll conserve your battery, increase the time between charges, and decrease the likelihood that you end up stranded with a drained phone and no charger.
Dim the Brightness
Your phone’s bright, colorful screen looks wonderful when it’s lit up at 100 percent brightness, but using full brightness is a surefire way to give yourself battery woes. Using full brightness on your phone can cause the battery to drain hours faster than it would on the lowest setting.
Turn off auto-brightness and manually reduce the brightness to at least 50 percent. The auto-brightness feature is handy because it reads the lighting levels where you are and adapts your phone screen, but it usually dials the brightness up higher than you really need. Manual is the way to go; you can always make it brighter if you can’t read the screen.
Close Background Apps
Apps running in the background, especially those that use GPS or Bluetooth, suck your battery dry when you’re not even using your phone. Get in the habit of closing every app you open before you put down your phone. The apps that are the biggest battery vampires might surprise you: Facebook, for example, has been linked to battery drain. In Android, just tap the multitasking icon and then swipe your apps off the screen to close them. In iOS, double-tap the home button and swipe up to close each open app.
Use the Doze Feature
If a Marshmallow update is available for your Android phone, download it. Marshmallow offers a feature called Doze, which lets your phone go into hibernation mode when it hasn’t been used for a certain period. Most notably, it barely runs while you’re sleeping, using up only a tiny percentage of the battery. You can select the apps that use Doze, too, by visiting Settings.
For Doze to work, your phone has to be completely still, and it can’t be plugged in. If you even move or shift it from one surface to the other, the sensors in your phone will register the movement. Let Doze double as the chance to leave your phone at your desk, undisturbed, while you’re in a meeting or out to lunch, offering you the chance to disconnect and focus on face-to-face interaction.
Download a Black Background
This trick only works with Android devices that have AMOLED screens, like the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge from T-Mobile. An AMOLED screen only illuminates colored pixels, so if your background is mostly black, the phone won’t use up energy lighting up those pixels. Dark pixels work, too, since they don’t need as much light. That leaves you with more power for browsing on the carrier’s super-fast network, and you’ll probably fall in love with the simpler background since it makes your app tiles more visible.
Shorten Your Screen Timeout
Instead of letting your screen stay bright for a minute or two before it darkens itself, give it 15 to 30 seconds. Consider the number of times you turn on your smartphone each day to check an app or look at a text message. Each time you leave the screen on for a minute, that wastes your battery. Set it to time out faster, and those seconds your phone goes without being lit up add up fast over the course of the day.
Lots of things drain your phone’s battery, and these are just a few of the largest culprits that will help you save battery time while you’re at work. Now you can learn more about which apps do the most damage to your battery, why always connecting to Wi-Fi isn’t the smartest choice, and which apps will help you conserve battery for an even more precise approach.