Battery-saving tips for Android4 min read . Updated: 08 Apr 2014, 07:13 PM IST
A true multitasker, this operating system tends to consume more batterybut there are several things you can do to conserve it
When it comes to battery life, no smartphone has a battery that fulfils our needs. Just about every person using a mobile device feels the need to carry a charger. And, when it comes to Android, the operating system is known for sucking your device’s battery within a short time span. Here are a few quick tips to help you tweak your device settings and get the best out of your battery.
Network selection mode
Though switching from 3G mode to 2G won’t save a lot of battery, it can be a lifesaver if you are low on battery and need to save some juice for crucial minutes later on. Switching to the 2G network ensures the device consumes less battery. This is generally because 2G has a better reception, so your device doesn’t have to shout out to the operators every time asking for a connection establishment request. Note: If you are in an area with great 3G reception, 3G is a better option since it consumes less power overall.
Here’s how you can force your Android to use 2G:
u Go to the Settings menu by selecting the settings icon from your applications.
u Under the Wireless and Networks section, click on More.
u Tap the Mobile Networks option and on the next screen, hit the Preferred Network type option and you will get three choices on screen.
u Now simply choose the 2G option by tapping on it.
Auto-screen brightness is a safe bet, but manual setting is better for overly bright screens—if you can do this every time. Doing it manually helps assess at what level of brightness you are still able to read.
In case you are too lazy to do it manually, you can use an application called Lux Lite—but it will keep running in the background, consuming some battery on its own.
Close background applications
Killing background applications doesn’t really improve on performance but there may be some applications that could be requesting Internet data in the background by pinging the servers for requests, ensuring a connection establishment or updating in the background. You should consider killing these applications instead to reduce the energy demands on the device. You can also restrict background data from the mobile data section to prevent background applications from fetching data and, in turn, give your battery some boost.
People are generally smart enough to keep their GPS off when it isn’t needed, but what they generally don’t do is disable the location reporting and history when they are actually using GPS. These two services are pre-bundled with Android and are enabled by default as soon as you turn on your GPS. The motive is not stated clearly anywhere, but they do keep track of your location and help Google Now and related services use the Net to send data back to servers. These two, according to the Google Help page, are there to improve your experience; overall, however, they consume a lot of battery power in surveying your location. If you wish to turn these off, you need to go to Settings>Location> Google Location Reporting and disable these.
Moreover, when you don’t need applications that require your precise location, you can set the mode to battery saving to conserve some.
Bluetooth and Wi-Fi
You should keep your Bluetooth and Wi-Fi drivers off when you don’t need them. In the case of Wi-Fi, even if it is disabled, the device constantly scans the surroundings nearby for available networks. You should turn it off as well. Head to Wi-Fi Settings>Advanced and uncheck the Wi-Fi scanning option. You will have to connect to Wi-Fi manually after doing so but it’s worth the effort.
Wallpapers and Themes
Live wallpapers are flashy, fun things for the home screen, but again they take up too much battery. Also, using the default launcher for your device instead of other launchers results in a smaller footprint—you should switch to it just in case you are low on battery. Darker themes consume less battery than brighter ones.
Disable Google Now cards
Google Now is a great assistant to have and once you start using it, you will find it unmatched in quality. Although you may not use all the Google Now services, they still keep running in the background. So you might want to disable the informational cards. For example, the “Nearby Places" card, a seemingly cool feature, gives you the hangout places nearby that you don’t usually travel to.
To disable specific cards, go to Now, scroll to the very bottom and touch the magic wand icon located at the lower centre of the screen. You can customize the cards you need and disable the ones you don’t. As a thumb rule, cards relying on GPS (such as Travel Time, Nearby Places, etc.) will drain more battery. So you can disable those to boost your battery a bit.
Sync is a feature in which your device constantly contacts Google’s servers for downloading email, calendar records and other information in the background. This uses up battery power and you should shut it down when it’s not needed. Don’t worry; everything will be synced later when you turn it on again.
Note: If you are really low on battery, switching to plane mode is the best way to save some battery. If you are still unsure of what is draining your device’s battery and wish to monitor battery-use statistics for various applications, you can do so in the battery section of Settings.