I work all day long with cell phones of all shapes and sizes and because of that, you can bet that I’ve learned a few tricks to keeping a cell phone running all day long. Sure, it’s easy to keep a phone juiced up if you’re not using it very often but what about those of us that are attached to our phones at the hip? Or smartphone users with battery-sucking touch screens that run games and movies and spreadsheets? It’s hard to keep the phone alive long enough to make the bus ride into work let alone the entire work day!
Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your cell phone’s battery life – without breaking the bank or your brain.
- Turn your phone off. I know, I know – it seems like a silly thing to mention, but hey, I’m guilty of not following this one myself. Are you at a movie theatre? Turn off your phone instead of putting it on silent. Sure, having the ringer off helps to keep the peace (and quiet), but you’d make all kinds of enemies flashing that bright phone light around in the dark theatre trying to check your text messages anyway. Turning it off will spare the battery that two hours of being stuffed in your pocket. Just make sure to turn it back on when you leave the theatre to check for those missed calls.
- Turn down/off the backlight. Most phones have brightness settings for the phone display to help make the phone easier to read in different lighting. Personally, I get by just fine with the brightness dimmed to the lowest setting. The default setting is usually sell to the highest brightness so play around with different light levels to see what works for you. The lower the brightness setting, the more life you’ll get out of the battery.
- Be picky about reception. If you’re spending some time in a place where the recepetion is very poor (only a couple bars or worse, no signal at all) you might want to consider turning your phone right off until you can get to somewhere where the signal is better. Having a low signal/poor reception causes your phone to constantly search and struggle to keep your phone connection operating. This drains the battery amazingly fast. If the signal is low enough, it’s entirely likely that you wouldn’t be able to receive a phone call where you are anyway, so why waste the battery?
- Disable vibrate mode. There are certainly times when having your phone on vibrate mode is appropriate, but keep in mind that this mode uses up a lot of battery power. When you find yourself in a situation where a ringtone won’t disrupt anything be sure to switch modes. The worst possible mode, of course, is having your phone vibrate and ring at the same time. If you can get by with one or the other, consider that option. If you find yourself in a situation where a ringtone will be disruptive and you won’t be answering your phone anyway, make use of your phone’s silent mode or even better — turn it off!
- Limit Bluetooth, WIFI, and GPS use. All of these services are huge battery hogs. Enable them only when you need them and be sure to disable them when your through.
Batteries on phones are getting better, but with these simple tips, you’ll be more likely to have power for your cell phone when you need it the most. What are your cell phone battery tips? Leave them in the comments below.