iOS has a lot of features that are consuming your iPhone battery life every second. Some of them are essential undoubtedly, but some do not help you at all.
For instance, Background App Refresh allows apps to refresh their content in the background when on Wi-Fi or cellular. If you do not turn this off manually for the apps that don’t need to refresh their data, then you may be using a lot more power than necessary. And not just this, if you don’t know how to set up your phone the right way, chances are many other features are running and changing your battery life for the worse.
If you are new to iOS or just don’t know why your device suddenly drains off the battery life too fast, then this post would be a fantastic point for you to get started. In this post, I will be showing you how to configure properly all the features that are affecting the battery life, so that you can make it last longer between charges.
Let’s dive in.
- 1. Disable wireless connectivity
- 2. Background App Refresh
- 3. Display & Brightness
- 4. Stop motion & animations
- 5. Find the apps using the most battery power
- 6. Location Services
- 7. Disable app updating
- 8. Auto-lock
- 9. Stop Mail fetch
- 10. Limit app notifications
- 11. Disable Raise to wake
- 12. Enable Low Power Mode
- Plus: The myth about quitting apps
1. Disable wireless connectivity
You should only enable the wireless connectivity when you really need to use. If you turn on Wi-Fi, even if there is no Wi-Fi network available, it will always hunt around for a Wi-Fi network that it can join. The same thing happens with AirDrop and Bluetooth.
Another point you should notice is using 3G (or 4G LTE especially) requires much more energy than using Wi-Fi. That’s why when you start using 3G instead of Wi-Fi, your device tends to heat up on the back and the battery percentage drops very rapidly.
In case the amount of battery you have left on your device is not so much and you really want to save it for more purposes, then you can enable Airplane Mode from Control Center. This act will quickly disable all the connections you’re using.
2. Background App Refresh
As I told you at the beginning, having all your apps running in the background all the time will use up a lot more power. If you have no idea how to control your background app refresh settings, then follow these steps:
- Go to Settings > General > Background App Refresh
- Here you can disable the background app refresh entirely or just for specific apps that don’t really need to refresh their data.
3. Display & Brightness
The Retina display on iPhone requires a lot of power. In fact, it is one of the biggest drains on your battery. So obviously it’s a good idea to keep your screen as dim as possible while still letting you see enough of what’s on there.
To do so, simply open up Control Center by swiping from the bottom of the screen. Then drag the slider to the left until you find that the screen is bright enough.
You should also turn off the Auto-Brightness feature under the Display & Brightness settings. Since this feature adjusts your display’s brightness according to the lighting of the current environment, turning it off will stop the sensor from working all the time and help reduce battery drain.
4. Stop motion & animations
You might have noticed that when you choose a new wallpaper, it will inform you that Dynamic wallpaper and perspective zoom are disabled when Low Power Mode is on. It means using dynamic wallpapers has an impact on battery life. So if you’re serious about saving battery, you should switch to static rather than dynamic wallpaper.
You should also turn on Reduce Motion under Settings > General > Accessibility to reduce all the animation effects of the user interface.
5. Find the apps using the most battery power
Your device’s detailed battery stats are located in the Settings menu. To see it, go to Settings > Battery. On this setting page, scroll down and you’ll see which apps are consuming the most power. With some apps, you might see a note beneath the app name providing more detail on which functionality the app uses power for.
Once you know which apps are the battery killers, you can disable the Background App Refresh feature for those apps or consider removing them if you find necessary.
6. Location Services
If you often see the tiny arrow icon located on the status bar, it means there are some apps or services that are using your location data in the background. A couple of them, which are essential features, require this data to work such as Maps and Compass while many others you may think they are useless.
I’ve created a complete guide on How to configure location services. Check it out to regain some battery life and also enhance your privacy.
7. Disable app updating
By default, your installed apps will automatically get updated if there is a new update available. That way, you can always keep your apps up-to-date. However, it also can be a drain on your battery since your device will send requests to App Store servers regularly to check for updates in the background.
If you don’t find this feature necessary, you can simply turn it off and update your apps manually. It can make the battery last a bit longer.
To turn it off, go to Settings > iTunes & App Store then switch off Updates in the Automatic Downloads section.
I have a habit that is I always press the Power/Sleep button after using my device. Because the longer the display stays on, the more power it consumes. But not everyone loves to do that, right?
Fortunately, if you don’t want to do that but still want to get the maximum battery life, you can choose to set your device to sleep after 30 seconds (the minimum option that has been added with iOS 9). Just navigate to Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto-Lock. and select the 30s option.
9. Stop Mail fetch
If you are using the stock Mail app on iOS, then you should notice the Push feature. If it is turned on, your device will constantly poll the server to check if there is new data available to pull down. So when there is an email sent to you arriving on the server, you will get the notification about it instantly.
But if you don’t need to know every time an email comes in, it’s wiser to turn it off and choose to fetch data periodically. You can choose from Every 15 Minutes, Every 30 Minutes, Hourly or Manually. Just remember the rule “For better battery life, fetch less frequently.”
On iOS 10, Go to Settings > Mail > Accounts > Fetch New Data
10. Limit app notifications
Not only does this help you save more power but also you can stop your device from showing annoying notifications. A great example of “Killing two birds with one stone”.
You can control your app notification settings in Settings > Notifications.
11. Disable Raise to wake
Raise to Wake is a simple and transformative new feature in iOS 10. It allows you to turn on the lock screen by just picking up the device. But many users claim that it doesn’t work perfectly and sometimes it tends to wake the display even at times when we don’t want it to.
So if you don’t find it helpful, you can turn it off: Go to Settings > Displays & Brightness > Raise to Wake.
12. Enable Low Power Mode
With Low Power Mode enabled, your device will stop every activity that is not necessary such as Mail fetch, Hey Siri or Background App Refresh…
So whenever you want your battery life to last longer, just turn on this feature. Apple has claimed that putting your device in this mode will allow you to gain three extra hours of battery life from your iPhone.
Low Power Mode can be enabled by asking Siri “Turn on Low Power Mode”. Or you can go to Settings > Battery to enable it manually.
Plus: The myth about quitting apps
Most of us believe that apps which are showed in the App Switcher are still running in the background, draining the battery and slowing down our phones in the process. So we always swipe upwards every app to close them after using.
But that’s not true. This act actually even makes your battery life worse if you do it on a regular basis. The reason is that when you close an app, you take it out of your phone’s RAM, and when you open it again, your device will load it back into memory. So if you keep doing it again and again and again with every app, it will actually put more impact on the battery than just leaving it alone.
What actually happens with the apps in the multitasking menu?
Well, when you press the Home button to quit an app, normally, it will be put into a state called suspended. Apps in this state are frozen by the system, they may remain in memory but not execute any code. Therefore, they almost won’t consume any of your battery life.