How To Get Your Battery Through The Day With Your Android Smartphone

By Jack Armijo | Battery

Did your Android Smartphone’s battery make it through the day?  If you’re reading this article, then odds are it didn’t.

Today’s smartphones are powerful little devices.  The list of things you can do on Android Smartphones is nearly endless and growing daily.  However, there is one drawback to having everything at your fingertips.  The battery dies so quickly.

Do a quick search online for smartphone battery saving tips.  You’ll find hundreds of articles.  After reading the 3rd article you’ll start seeing  the same tips over and over and over…

Use These Battery Saving Tips at Your Own Risk

  • Dim your screen – Those beautiful high resolution screens take a lot of power.  The suggestion is to turn off auto adjust and dim the screen as much as possible.  I tried this once; I was indoors, so I dimmed my screen to usable but dark.  A few hours later I walked outside in early afternoon.  I received a call and I couldn’t see anything on the screen. I couldn’t answer the call!  In full sunlight the screen must be really bright to be seen. I then set my screen bright enough to be able to use it outside.  It was way too bright indoors.  I went back to auto adjust that evening.
  • Turn off auto-sync of email and social sites – I tried this as well.  I don’t mind missing an update from facebook every 15 minutes.  However, I turned off email and 5 minutes later I get call from my boss.  “Did you see that email?” he says.  The email was from his boss asking for an update.  I turned auto-sync on for email.
  • Turn off Bluetooth, GPS, and Wi-Fi when not using – This tip is a little easier to live with.  That is, unless you use Navigation often or a bluetooth headset.  The key here is, be aware of how you use your smartphone.  Provide power to the features you need.  Turn off those you don’t.
  • Remove widgets and apps that update frequently that are not important – There are many apps that get installed because it was “cool in the moment” but now, should just be removed.  It is not easy to identify your biggest battery draining apps.  Unfortunately, that’s outside the scope of this article.  Do a quick review and uninstall those apps you really do not use.

Why Even Have An Android Smartphone?

All of the suggestions listed above work in theory.  If you implement all of them you might get an additional hour, maybe two, from your battery.

However, it’s what you give up that’s important!  Your smartphone was supposed to provide convenience.  It was supposed to make your life easier.

If every time you go outside you have to reset the brightness of your screen or set a reminder to check your email then you’ve lost the core reason for having a smartphone.  It’s now an inconvenience to use it.

I expect my smartphone to be like a personal digital assistant (PDA’s).   I imagine you expected the same from yours.   They are designed to give you access to information wherever you go.  Information you can use to do your job better.  Information to enjoy your personal life more.  That’s why you bought your smartphone to begin with.

What would you do if you had an administrative assistant that you constantly had to remind to do their job?  You would get rid of them.  They’re not doing the job you hired them to do.  Isn’t your smartphone basically the same thing?  A tool you purchased to do a specific job.

The tips listed above are not practical.  Honestly, the only way to get around the battery dying issue is to charge it.

So What’s the Solution?

Here’s how to solve the problem:

  1. Get a car charger – I have a charger in all of my cars.  This ensures I can use the functions of my smartphone without fear of killing my battery.  GPS will eat through a battery like food addicts at an all you can eat buffet.  I depend on GPS often and do not want to limit myself from using it because of battery life.  I like this 2-Port USB Car Charger.  Not only does it charge 2 devices at once.  It also sits flush with your lighter plug or outlet.  This keeps it from being broken by kids or pets getting in and out of the car.  Yes I’m speaking from experience.
  2. Extra USB Cables – In June 2009, 14 of the largest mobile phone manufacturers agreed to use a single standard for cell phone chargers. This means you can change from a Samsung, to a LG, to a HTC, to a Motorola smartphone and the cables and plugs listed here will still work.  That’s why I prefer chargers like the the GTMax car charger or this wall plug-in adapter and why I have extra cables available.  Here is an example of a cable that I like. I can switch between devices and the cables and plugs work universally.
  3. External Battery Packs – I just recently found out about these.  I wish I would have had one of these on the 2 field trips I took with my son’s school.  Travel is the hardest on your battery especially if you have a 4G device.  The phone is constantly checking in with the cell phone network.  If there are long expanses without service this causes your phone to check in more frequently.  Bye, bye little battery.    Lifehacker recently asked its readers for the 5 Most Popular External Battery Packs.  Of all the suggestions the Anker Astro Series external chargers received the most votes.  I personally will never go on another trip without one.

Why hamstring your smartphone?  Why take away its most convenient features?  Yes, all of those conveniences will drain the battery.  But it won’t matter because you’re prepared.  What’s the old quote?  “An ounce of preparation is worth a pound of cure.”  Be prepared and enjoy all the conveniences your smartphone offers.

What Do You Think?

Have you discovered any tips that actually work for you?  Does your smartphone make it longer than a day on a single charge?  Is it more important to be frugal with the battery or to be prepared and enjoy what these devices have to offer?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Friends don’t let friends go with a dead battery.  Click the share buttons to help a friend out.


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Joe March 13, 2017

Jack: My first smartphone was an S3. My younger brother gave it to me over a year ago. When I found out that it was on CDMA I couldn’t use it I have an AT&T GoPhone account.The phone I use for calls is a Samsung Focus S (SGH-i937). Since my eyes aren’t the best I just make and receive calls. My cell phone bill is $7.50 a month. I offered the S3 back to my brother, but he said try some mp3s on it. WOW! I still have a large vinyl collection with a very good turntable, and a Philips CD Audio recorder. I have on mp3s of the Beatles, the Dave Clark 5 (still my favourite band), and a lot of instrumentals from the ’50’s to the mid-’70’s. I tried, and bought the Poweramp app.That app began to be a pain as it took over the S3. About two weeks ago I purchased an S5 that was locked to AT&T. DISCLAIMER: ALL my mp3s are for private use ONLY!

At first I was a little bewildered with the 5. I noticed it was a little like the S3, but better. A couple of days ago I “stumbled” here and came back. Learned a few things and will be coming back from time to time. Thanks, Joe

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