Optimize & Increase Battery Life of your Android Phone

Some of my friends always say that even if android is great the battery life is not that great with them. Everyone always compare older Nokia and old generation Sony Ericsson phone’s battery life with today’s high end devices.

I agree that battery life should be little more increased. However, people need to understand that the types of features and functions they are demanding needs battery. Continuously running GPS, Online Games, Tracking services, Live wallpapers, running numerous apps etc this all needs energy to carry on function.

At the time of basic phones all of these things like HD, social networking, multitasking was hardly available and so more battery was available.

Battery can be increased by manufacturers in three ways;
1. Increase Battery Size. Lol. (And on other hand you want slimmer phones)
2. Researching new battery materials (ions etc) instead of current Li-Ion or Polymers and low current resistant hardware.
3. Optimizing operating systems and apps (this is endless thing which they always keep doing.)

Question is how you can optimize your device’s battery to get more out of it. Here are simple things which you can do. I am not saying you should do all things and reduce beauty of your phone. Some suitable combinations as per you will bring great results.

A. Removing unwanted Apps and converting them:

Android is built in a way that it keeps most of the service alive until user runs some other app which requires more memory. At that stage Android wipes or stops those running apps (some of them). System apps are never stopped. Catch is – Running an app, allocating it memory area, stopping it, wiping it again from RAM, loading a new one – claims battery life. More these cycles are there, the lesser will be standby times and ideal battery life.

There are numerous apps pre-installed when you get a new phone, table or device. Most of them are trial version or country specific. Many of these apps keep running their services to give you better experience (yeah only if you are using them). Because of these above explained cycles increases.

Many apps like Gmail, Timescape, Maps, Facebook (all social networking apps) etc. doesn’t need to be in System ROM. They can be uninstalled from there and re-installed from market. Or you can convert them to User apps. What is the point? You gain more System ROM (actual performance related memory) for the same apps which can be installed in phones RAM.

Removing and converting such apps not only increases battery life but also system ROM and performance. You can follow this guide to remove or convert such apps to gain more memory, battery and performance.

B. Phone Settings and Usage.

1. GPS and Bluetooth: If you don’t use GPS and Bluetooth to much then keep it off. They are huge drainers. Bluetooth goes automatically to OFF status if you haven’t messed up the settings.
2. Wi-Fi: Under sub-settings (advanced) there is an option. Keep it as “No notification of Networks”. And it will be great if you can keep your Wi-Fi off.
3. Display: Use less brightness. This directly comes from battery. Just keep it that much which will not hurt your eyes to read. Automatic settings are good choice if you know the environments you work in.
Keep Sleep (automatic backlight off) timing as ’30 Sec’. It is enough.
4. Apps: I have already detailed it in section A.
5. Accounts and Sync: I get important mails and other things. Even then I keep it Automatic Sync as off. Reason is all the apps nowadays syncs again whenever you launch them. Only downside is you will not get notifications.
6. Social Apps: Autosync off and No notifications except for chat software. It is all their in settings of each app. Go search.
7. Location services: I don’t like to be traced. So I keep all of these OFF. You can too. Whenever you need to use Maps, Navigator etc you can switch them manually.
8. Unknown Sources: This setting is useful to install apps off-market. However, when you are done you should just shut it off. I really don’t know it hurts battery or not. Just belief!
9. Accessibility: Turns these off if you don’t need it.
10. Developer options: Keeping ‘Android Debugging’ as ON can be the worst mistake you can make. This drains battery like water down the dry grounds. Turn this OFF and also the ‘Allow mock locations’ option.
11. If you have Android 4.0 + i.e. ICS then you got one more option in Developer Section. It is ‘Don’t Keep Activities’. If you turn this on then the app will be killed as soon as you leave them. Be cautious as we always leave Social networking apps by coming back to desktop.
12. 2G and 3G: Of course 3G kills battery faster. If you are ok with 2G or the 2G is only thing you get then select ‘Use 2G only’ under mobile data/wireless network/connectivity.
13. Setting network to manual mode: If you want to select your network manually then set it to manual. Reason is phone keeps searching for network when it can’t find your home network. This drains battery.
14. Basic is best:
– Try to use basic theme and less customization.
– Less widgets.
– Lighter launcher like Zeam
– Lesser number of screens.
– Lesser animations
These all lowers down the load on system of keeping them alive and so lowers the energy usage.

C. Going Little Advanced:

1. Install Battery Calibrators from Market and use them as instructed after starting. Remember to charge your battery to 100% before using calibrators. Many times they may give unwanted result. Try some other app. There are plenty.
2. Overclock and Underclock: If you have overclocked your phone’s processor then it may result in little battery drainage. Not much but if it’s bothering you then reset it to default. This option is mostly available in custom ROMS like CyanogenMod etc. However, there are apps also for this. Most of them needs Rooted device.
3. Increasing Heap size: This will not only increase performance but also the battery. This is also available in Custom ROMS and there are apps also.
4. Using ClockWorkMod Recovery or xRecovery: There is an option under these recoveries called ‘ Wipe Battery Stats’. It is good to wipe it after new ROM installation. This is also recommended after calibration is done. This is also a kind of calibration but more of hardware level. These recoveries are available with Custom ROMS and you can even install them on stock ROM.
5. Always drain your battery until remains around 20%. Recharging Li-ion batteries too many times kill them very early.

Restart your phone after all this. Charge it to 100% and see the magic.

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