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  1. #1
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    Android - Mobile battery life

    The last weekend camp I went on, my phone (HTC Legend) was dead well before the end despite hardly using it and I generally got sick of having to charge every evening so when I got my new phone I looked for one with better battery life but on the reviews, they all said the same - charge every night. So I decided I'd try optimising the setup to get some more and this is what I've got so far. With reasonable use using the internet, email, some calls and texts I'm getting 2 days easily. I'd estimate 4-5 days or longer if it was just on standby for emergency use. New phone is HTC Explorer. (Android)

    1/ I've installed the JuiceDefenderPlus app (1.99) which turns off the wifi etc. when it's not needed. If you don't want to pay, the free version is almost as good (use the 'agressive' profile). This makes a huge difference and I don't know why Android doesn't do a lot of this itself. My current settings are:
    Profile: advanced
    Mobile data: enabled (will turn it off when it can)
    WiFi: enabled (will turn it off when it can)
    Options auto disable, wifi preferred
    Schedule: enabled (1h, 1m) so I can quickly flick on the screen and see if there are any emails to read
    Night: enabled (22:00->06:00)

    2/ I've avoided the use of widgets. The only one I'm using is a free clock (DIGI Clock Widget) which doesn't include loacation information, just the time. I'm pretty sure that monitoring your location uses quite a bit of power and isn't really necessary.

    3/ Maps - Try not to use it. If you do it seems to start up a background process that continually monitors where you are so that next time you use Maps it is ready and doesn't need to search. If you must use it, afterwards go into 'Manage applications' and clear all data for Maps which will get rid of it. Force stop won't work - it will respawn.

    4/ Settings->Power->Fastboot should be off. If left on, it stops the phone from sleeping properly so it can start up quicker. For the sake of a few seconds wait at startup I don't think it's worth it.

    5/ Settings->Location turn off WiFi and GPS. Again, you don't need to know where you are that accurately and neither does anyone else. Turn them on if/when you really need them but by default leave them off.

    Hope that helps someone and would like to hear any further hints/tips to extend the battery life even further.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by MartinSykes View Post
    1/ I've installed the JuiceDefenderPlus app (1.99) which turns off the wifi etc. when it's not needed. If you don't want to pay, the free version is almost as good (use the 'agressive' profile). This makes a huge difference and I don't know why Android doesn't do a lot of this itself.
    The trouble is that it reduces usability. If data is not on, push notifications are delayed and Google Talk doesn't work properly. Personally I find this annoying - your mileage may vary, as they say.

    3/ Maps - Try not to use it. If you do it seems to start up a background process that continually monitors where you are so that next time you use Maps it is ready and doesn't need to search. If you must use it, afterwards go into 'Manage applications' and clear all data for Maps which will get rid of it. Force stop won't work - it will respawn.
    Again...Maps is one of the most useful applications, including the sat-nav feature.

    5/ Settings->Location turn off WiFi and GPS. Again, you don't need to know where you are that accurately and neither does anyone else. Turn them on if/when you really need them but by default leave them off.
    Incredibly useful when using Maps...

    What I do do is put the wi-fi and data toggles on the front screen, and they often get turned off manually on camp, or if battery is getting really low put it in flight mode[1] and check voicemail once an hour just in case. But in normal usage I'd rather charge daily, just plug it in by my bed (as I use the alarm to wake me up). If nothing else it prevents me forgetting to charge it.

    That said, I did add a double-capacity battery pack. With the normal battery and my normal usage on an original HTC Desire, I wasn't even getting a day out of it. The battery pack makes it bigger but easier to hold, so no real disadvantage.

    [1] I haven't worn a watch for years, so with it off completely it leaves me not knowing the time.

    Neil

  3. #3
    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil Williams View Post
    The trouble is that it reduces usability. If data is not on, push notifications are delayed and Google Talk doesn't work properly. Personally I find this annoying - your mileage may vary, as they say. Again...Maps is one of the most useful applications, including the sat-nav feature.
    Yes, depends on your needs. If you need push notifications and high connectivity then this approach isn't for you. However, if you don't then it's good to be able to actually turn off the things you don't need rather than have them wasting power in the background.

    Maps is nice but that background process bothers me. When I close something I want it to stop. I guess it's trying to be helpful by sitting there on standby but it's just wasting power. I just don't think power consumption is a design consideration when a lot of these apps are designed.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by MartinSykes View Post
    Maps is nice but that background process bothers me. When I close something I want it to stop. I guess it's trying to be helpful by sitting there on standby but it's just wasting power. I just don't think power consumption is a design consideration when a lot of these apps are designed.
    As it doesn't use GPS unless you're using it in the foreground (it's just monitoring position via wi-fi and the mobile networks) it doesn't use a *lot* of power but performs a quite helpful task if you use Maps a lot. I certainly do!

    Agree about having more config options to turn stuff off, though. I did try JuiceDefender but I just didn't like the functionality penalty when plugging your phone in at night usually isn't an issue.

    The problem is just that battery technology hasn't caught up with what we expect in a smartphone - basically a tiny laptop with a high battery life!

    Neil

    ------ Update --- The Following was Added within 30 Minutes of the above ---

    What I do find is that wi-fi is battery-heavy - so having the toggles on the front screen to swap between wi-fi and mobile data depending on if you're at home or not is helpful to me and does make a noticeable difference.

    Also turn Bluetooth off if like me you never use it.

    Neil

  6. #6
    Senior Member roger-uk's Avatar
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    Spare batteries on Ebay 2.95 each.

    I have 3 spare for me HTC Wildfire with off phone charger

    No problrms
    Roger Woods
    Cub Scout Leader, Pegasus Pack,
    1st Sawley (All Saints) , Long Eaton
    www.sawley-scouts.org.uk

    NSRA Air Rifle instructor
    GNAS Archery Instructor
    Country coordinator - Scoutlink
    Radio amateur (G8XAN)

    Member of the BBBS

    The Bring Bushfella Back Society. Join if you think he should stay. http://www.escouts.org.uk/forum/thre...ng-Cold-Turkey

  7. #7
    Senior Member Smartiepants's Avatar
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    Spare batteries for me too. I have 5 in total and on the last camp, they just about saw me through. I used to use Juice Defender, but you may as well just put it on flight mode!

    I got a little sick of people telling me to turn off all my notifications etc. Doing that defeats the object of the phone, may as well go back to using a 3210 as I'd be able to text a lot ****** quicker.

    Someone suggested to me an app called "advanced task killer" which gives you the option to properly close tasks (which the android task killer doesn't actually do) and it's made the world of difference to me. I can now go almost 14 hours on one battery, where as before it would be 7-8 without heavy use. My record is emptying a battery in less than 2 hours

    Roll on upgrade time when I can get an iphone!


    Anastasia

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  8. #8
    Senior Member roger-uk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smartiepants View Post
    Spare batteries for me too. I have 5 in total and on the last camp, they just about saw me through. I used to use Juice Defender, but you may as well just put it on flight mode!

    I got a little sick of people telling me to turn off all my notifications etc. Doing that defeats the object of the phone, may as well go back to using a 3210 as I'd be able to text a lot ****** quicker.

    Someone suggested to me an app called "advanced task killer" which gives you the option to properly close tasks (which the android task killer doesn't actually do) and it's made the world of difference to me. I can now go almost 14 hours on one battery, where as before it would be 7-8 without heavy use. My record is emptying a battery in less than 2 hours

    Roll on upgrade time when I can get an iphone!
    Iphones are just as bad. Just finished builing a packet siize 10 amp recharger for my android - all parts less than 10 - nice circuitry too

    Iphones are just as bad
    Roger Woods
    Cub Scout Leader, Pegasus Pack,
    1st Sawley (All Saints) , Long Eaton
    www.sawley-scouts.org.uk

    NSRA Air Rifle instructor
    GNAS Archery Instructor
    Country coordinator - Scoutlink
    Radio amateur (G8XAN)

    Member of the BBBS

    The Bring Bushfella Back Society. Join if you think he should stay. http://www.escouts.org.uk/forum/thre...ng-Cold-Turkey

  9. #9
    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smartiepants View Post
    Roll on upgrade time when I can get an iphone!
    so you can't get spare batteries?

    if you prefer iphone to android, you're doing it wrong :-)

  10. #10
    Moderator jshirra's Avatar
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    There's probably several similar things but http://item.mobileweb.ebay.co.uk/vie...id=49132957661

    I guess I get about 75% from flat with mine! For a fiver you could get a couple...1 charge has lasted me a couple of days - generally I don't want or need Internet at camp so can just use it as a phone...

  11. #11
    Senior Member Smartiepants's Avatar
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    Most people I know with iphones report that they charge a hell of a lot quicker, and hold their charge for much longer. On holiday with friends last year and their iphones charged to about 50% via a solar charger, my car charger charged my androis POS to about 10% in the same time. I don't really want to carry spare batteries as constantly changing them has weakened the connections meaning it likes to switch itself off fairly regularly.

    I only went for android because I thought people only bought iphones as fashion accessories. I've learnt the hard way1


    Anastasia

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  12. #12
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    With the setup I described above, mine has been running off the battery for 3 full days now and I've still got about 30-40% left. I'm not a heavy user but I've been checking emails, a bit of internet browsing, receiving texts and made a few calls so I don't feel like I'm particularly missing out on anything.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Gooders's Avatar
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    The recent update of IOS to 5.1 has made a huge difference to the battery life of my iPhone4. With light use I can now get a weekend's use out of it whereas before I had to charge it every day.

    The battery life of my Android tablet is shocking. I'm going to have to look at some of these hints for that.

    Stephen


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    Stephen Goodman

    All opinions expressed here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my Group, District or any other organisation of which I am a member.

  14. #14
    Senior Member roger-uk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gooders View Post
    The recent update of IOS to 5.1 has made a huge difference to the battery life of my iPhone4. With light use I can now get a weekend's use out of it whereas before I had to charge it every day.

    The battery life of my Android tablet is shocking. I'm going to have to look at some of these hints for that.

    Stephen


    Sent using Tapatalk
    What sort of usage and periof Gooders. I am looking at getting one
    Roger Woods
    Cub Scout Leader, Pegasus Pack,
    1st Sawley (All Saints) , Long Eaton
    www.sawley-scouts.org.uk

    NSRA Air Rifle instructor
    GNAS Archery Instructor
    Country coordinator - Scoutlink
    Radio amateur (G8XAN)

    Member of the BBBS

    The Bring Bushfella Back Society. Join if you think he should stay. http://www.escouts.org.uk/forum/thre...ng-Cold-Turkey

  15. #15
    Senior Member stockyscouts's Avatar
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    Since moving from an iphone to Android I've found that I get a lot longer out of a battery, not to mention a better gps signal.

    I usually can get through the weekend with one charge.

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2r
    Shaun

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