It’s 2016, and our mobile phones have developed into so much more than something to make and receive calls with.

They’ve transformed into mini hand-held computers that can do anything from filming high-definition videos, acting as personal navigation systems and surfing the entire internet.

But where these ‘smartphones’ excel, there comes a cost. In order to power the bright colourful screens and clever applications running behind it, they demand a lot from the batteries they’re running from. No longer will a fully charged phone last up to a week, as most smartphones now will barely survive 24 hours; relying instead on inconvenient battery packs and scarce charging-stations.

And unfortunately, you’ll be waiting quite a while for battery technology to catch up. But in the meantime we have a list of battery-saving tips that will help get you those extra few hours whilst on the go.

1. Activate Power-Saving mode


Let’s get the most obvious method out of the way. Most smartphones now will come with a convenient power-saving mode, which manages the device’s many features to ensure minimal power is being used. On some models this will automatically activate when the charge is low, but you can still manually set this at any point of the battery’s life.

2. Turn Off Vibrations


If you know you’ll be constantly receiving alerts, consider turning off the vibration function – which works by having a small rotating motor placed slightly off balance to cause shaking. This actually takes up more battery than ringing, and brings only the benefit of added awareness for when your phone goes off.

3. Disable Wi-Fi, Mobile Data, Bluetooth


We all want to stay connected. That’s the beauty of these amazing smartphones. Whether it’s syncing wirelessly to your car via Bluetooth or browsing the web via a secure internet connection, most of our day-to-day wants and needs are just a fingertip away. However, if you can go the next few hours without listening to wireless headphones or surfing the web, then it’ll help to disable these functions. They require constant energy and, when left on, they can even power other applications in the background which aren’t being used.

4. Lower Screen Brightness


Your phone’s colourful display is a guilty party in the strain your battery suffers. It’s perhaps the most energy-hungry component, and with upcoming phones now aiming to have HD screens installed, you can expect even more use out of the battery. But if you can endure a dim-lit screen, we heavily recommend you do so as it can prolong the life of your battery dramatically.

5. Airplane Mode


When activated, airplane mode will disable cellular, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS functionalities – all of which zap large amounts of power. So if you’re in an area or at a time where these aren’t a complete necessity, turn on airplane mode, as it’s one of the most effective methods of preserving battery. It also becomes particularly handy if you’re near a charging-station, as your device will charge even quicker.

6. Close or Delete Unnecessary Apps


During the course of your smartphone’s life, you will have accrued a number of apps – most of which aren’t used any more. Some of these are sitting harmlessly in the background conserving no energy, but others can still be running if there’s an internet connection and push notifications are enabled. Head over to your phone’s battery usage section and see which apps are the biggest offenders, and consider deleting them.

7. Disable Location Services & GPS


Your phone’s location services and GPS functionalities allow your location to be tracked and monitored. They work in conjunction with many power-hungry apps such as Facebook, Google Maps and even your internet browser. And for other apps – such as games – it’s not even clear why access to your location is required. In any case, if it’s not completely necessary to have these running, turn them off to prevent additional usage of your battery.

8. Install an Ad Blocker


Many will argue against the use of ad blockers as they prevent the appearance of adverts which serve as revenue for publishers. But they’re also an extreme nuisance. Unwanted pop-ups not only ruin user experience, but can actually drain lots of data and battery when surfing the web. An incredible amount of energy is spent to temporarily save additional images and animated videos, to then finally load and force you to view. That’s a lot of work for content you’ve not asked for.

9. Shorten Screen Timeout


Every smartphone will give you the option to set how long your screen will remain on during a period of inactivity. If you’re a long way from a charging source and every percentage matters, then consider reducing the screen’s timeout. The longer your screen rests for, the less your battery has to suffer.

10. Turn off Push-Notifications


Many of your apps provide push-notifications that make you aware of new information, updates, messages and reminders. Whilst most of these are convenient (such as emails), others are less so (such as games telling you how you’ve ranked with other players).

They require lots of energy to constantly turn your screen on and demand your attention to act on them. Some are even assisted by vibrations and sound alerts, and when you add all of these up, a lot of energy is expended by your battery to keep these running.

Have I missed anything?

Are there any other tricks or tips users should be aware of? Please leave your comments below.