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5 Tips to Improve Your Smartphone Battery

It's a constantly asked question: How do you improve your smartphone battery, so you're not left with a dead brick at the end of the day?

The Wirecutter and The New York Times recently tackled this issue, publishing a handy list of both battery-saving tips and myths that all smartphone users will find helpful. You can find the full guide on their websites, but here are a few of their notes to help your draining battery:

1) Reduce your screen brightness, or at least turn on your phone's auto-brightness so it can adjust for you. This is an easy fix that won't impact your activity on the phone too much. Turning it down yourself will help more, but auto-brightness will ensure you'll still be able to read the screen in dim or bright environments.

On an Android phone: Go to Settings > Display > hit Adaptive brightness, or just swipe down from the top of the screen to display your quick settings and check "Auto".

On an Apple iPhone: Go to Settings > Display & Brightness > turn on Auto-Brightness or toggle the bar. You can also swipe up from the bottom of the screen and adjust the toggle bar there.

2) Switch from 'push' to 'fetch' email, so that your phone only retrieves email when you ask it to, or on a timed schedule. If you don't need to see every email immediately as it comes in, set your phone to fetch at certain intervals, say every 15-30 minutes, or only when you refresh your mail. The more messages you receive and email accounts you have, the more this will help, The Wirecutter explains.

On an Android: Go to Settings > Accounts > select the specific email account you'd like to edit > Sync settings > set Sync schedule.

On an iPhone: Go to Settings > Mail > Fetch New Data > turn off Push and adjust Fetch to your preference.

3) Disable GPS or location services for apps that don't need it. A number of apps will automatically want to use your GPS, whether to find your location for weather, restaurant suggestions, etc. But if you don't absolutely need GPS, you can choose to turn it off so it doesn't hog your battery. Instead, manually enter your city or location on apps that might want geographic data.

On an Android: Settings > Location, or swipe down so the quick settings dropdown appears, and toggle on/off Location.

On an iPhone: Settings > Privacy > Location Services > adjust per app.

4) Turn on low-power or battery-saver mode (or even airplane mode) to stretch your phone long enough to get to the next charge. Low-power mode (on iPhone) or battery-saver mode (on Android) disable features that require a lot of power, while still allowing access to calls, texts, data and more. Your phone will switch automatically when the battery dips below a certain level, the Wirecutter explains, but you can manually turn it on as well. As a last resort, turning on airplane mode (no access to phone calls, texts or data) can help ensure your phone stays on until you can charge - this can be useful if an emergency arises.

On an Android: Settings > Battery > select the three dots in the corner > turn on Battery saver, or wipe down so the quick settings dropdown appears, and toggle on/off your battery settings.

On an iPhone: Settings > Battery > turn on Low Power Mode

5) Turn off cellular data or Wi-Fi when you have a corresponding weak signal. Say you're in an area with great 3G/LTE but terrible Wi-Fi. You should turn off your phone's Wi-Fi so it's not constantly trying to connect to that network. The reverse also applies: If you're at home and you have great Wi-Fi but terrible mobile data, turn off the mobile data.

On an Android: Settings > Data usage > toggle on/off, or swipe down from the top of the screen so the quick settings appear, toggle on/off Mobile Data and Wi-Fi.

On an iPhone: Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and tap the Wi-Fi icon so it's no longer illuminated. For cellular data, go to Settings > Cellular > turn off.

Note: Specific steps for changing your settings may vary depending on phone and operating system. The instructions above have been tested on iPhones running iOS 9 and Android phones running Lollipop.

Interested in learning more? Read here:

Tags: tips | smartphone | battery | iphone | android | dead

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