[toc]Does your Android battery life seem sub-par at times? Do you often find yourself scrambling to get to an outlet before the end of the day? If so, you’re not alone. Ask almost any smartphone user what their biggest complaint about (insert random phone) is, and they’ll likely all tell you the same thing: poor battery life.
Phones aren’t exactly cheap these days. When you’re paying upwards of $500, in most cases, you expect to be able to make it through your normal daily routine without your phone dying on you.
I can’t count the times I’ve had a friend or co-worker ask me why their battery seems to die so quickly, and you’re probably in that same boat if, you’ve stumbled upon this post. That said, I’ve rounded up a few tips that should help you get some extra life out of your Android phone’s battery. Give them a try and thank me when your battery makes it through your next all-day adventure.
Track Down Rogue Apps
Apps running in the background drain your battery. Furthermore, we’re not always aware they’re open. Most modern versions of Android can help you pinpoint the culprit pretty simply, just by heading over to your phone’s battery settings. From there, you can see which apps have used battery and how much they’ve used since the last time you unplugged your phone.
On the LG G6 and many other phones, you can stop any apps you find on the list that are consuming a lot of battery. Facebook, Twitter and Google+ can all put a massive drain on your battery, especially if you’re a heavy user. Snapchat is also notorious for running in the background. Any time you aren’t using these apps, there’s a good chance they’re still running, so don’t be afraid to stop them if you think you’re getting less battery life than usual.
Turn Off Radio Hardware You Aren’t Using
This is one that most of us are guilty of — forgetting to turn off settings like WiFi and Bluetooth when they’re not in use. It goes without saying that all of these radios consume power to function, so disable them when you’re not using them. NFC and your data connection are also battery eaters, so turn them off when you’re not using them, as well.
Just remember, disabling your data connection means you won’t get notifications on any of your apps and anything that needs an Internet connection won’t work until you re-enable this setting. Also, most newer phones have a toggle menu for these settings on the pull-down notification bar, like the one you see above.
Steer Clear of Auto/Adaptive Brightness
This one is a setting most of us think will help, but it doesn’t. Your screen brightness automatically adjusts to the light levels in your surroundings, so it should work great, right? Turns out, we’re all wrong. Because your phone is constantly detecting light levels, it actually consumes more energy than it would if you manually set your brightness and change it as needed.
Also, the display is usually brighter than it needs to be when it’s auto set. Many times, it’s too bright for my eyes when I’m laying in bed at night and glued to my phone. If you spend a lot of time indoors, you’ll probably be okay setting the brightness level to 25%. If you’re outside in the sun, you’ll obviously need to crank it up enough to where you can see easily. Most of the time, you can achieve this at a lower setting than what you’ll get with auto brightness.
Keep Your Apps Up-To-Date
Sometimes you’ll find one of those battery-sucking apps I mentioned earlier. They’re a pain in the ass, but often app updates roll out that aim to decrease battery drain. Facebook is a great example here.
While the official Facebook app is still far from perfect, it’s come a long way over the past few years. There was a time when I had abandoned it altogether in favor of using the mobile web version. Luckily, those issues are a little less prevalent these days, thanks to the app’s developers.
Keeping your apps up to date is one of the easiest things you can do to extend your battery life. In fact, you can set your Google Play Store app to auto update, so you don’t even have to do anything. If you’re the type like me who updates your apps manually, just make sure you do it frequently.
Speaking Of Apps, Give Greenify a try!
Another thing you can do to stretch your battery life is to recruit the help of third-party apps. I highly recommend Greenify. It helps you identify misbehaving apps and put them into hibernation when they aren’t in use.
It works on both rooted and non-rooted devices, with more features available for those with root. There is a donation version available for $2.99 that unlocks even more. Check out the links below if you’d like to give Greenify a spin. If it helps, buy the donation version for less than you’ll spend on a decent beer.
Don’t Clutter Your Homescreen With Widgets
Widgets are cool and all, but the less you use, the better. Just like hardware radios and social media apps, widgets rank right up there with the leading causes of battery drain. I’m not saying you shouldn’t use any, but you should certainly choose wisely.
Limit yourself to between 1 and 3, and you should be okay. Widgets also show up in your battery usage settings and in Greenify. If you find one that’s chewing battery, ditch it and move on. In the photo above, you can see a perfect example of what NOT to do when you’re laying out your widgets.
Disable “OK Google”
“OK Google” can drain your battery, as well. In case you’re unfamiliar, this is the hotword that invokes the almighty Google Assistant. If you don’t use it much, turn it off. You can do so by going to the Google App’s Settings > Voice > “OK Google” Detection. I personally love my Google Assistant, so I don’t do this. There are benefits when it comes to your battery, if you decide to.
Use Built-In Battery Saving Features
Does your phone have a built-in battery saving feature? USE IT! My LG G6 and most other newer Android phones come with features like these out of the box. On the G6, the battery saver setting helps by reducing brightness and disabling your device’s vibration settings. It restricts apps from running in the background, and it also limits notifications, downloading and streaming.
You can turn on Battery Saver at any time, or you can choose to have it automatically turn on when your battery dips to 15% or 5%. There’s also a Game Battery Saver mode — I keep this one enabled — which slightly lowers the framerate and display settings when you’re playing games. Games are major battery sucker, in case you didn’t know.
Disable Auto-Syncing Apps You Don’t Use Often
I’ve talked a lot about apps that drain your battery in this post, and here’s one more thing you can do to help a bit. Go into your Settings > Accounts > Google and disable any apps you don’t use much. This one is pretty straight-forward, but again, the benefits are obvious.
Reduce Your Screen Timeout Setting
Most phone displays turn off after 30 seconds to a minute of inactivity, by default. Why not cut that down and save yourself some juice? I set mine to 15 seconds. Any lower and the display times out too quickly while I’m reading an article. It might not seem like much, but every second of energy you conserve adds up to extra battery life for when you need your phone most.
Bonus Tip: When All Else Fails, Reboot!
You should reboot your phone somewhat frequently. I suggest doing it daily, but at very least, turn it all the way off and then back on once a week. This helps to clear up memory and give you a fresh start.
Hopefully, you found these tips useful. Did I miss anything? Do you have suggestions I didn’t cover in this post? Feel free to share in the comment thread below.