DMA HOW-TO: Get a Longer Charge from Your iPhone Battery

By Yishan Lin

These are all the apps that are currently on standby on this iPhone.

That YouTube video you’re streaming while you’re using your GPS will drain your phone battery quicker than you can say “iOS.” So how can you keep your iPhone from using all that energy, so you’re not always charging it?

This DMA HOW-TO focuses on two easy and practical methods that can boost battery life without sacrificing iPhone features or functionality.

Quit Unused Apps Regularly
Apps are the key to the iPhone experience but, as with Mac OS, apps in iOS don’t entirely quit when you exit the application. Sure, it’s convenient, but these same apps will use up battery life when you keep them on standby. In other words, that Weather app that you checked early this morning will keep on running and drawing power all day long until you eventually quit the application or turn off the iPhone. To save battery power, quit apps completely as soon as you’re done using them.

Here’s how:

This red circular exit button appears at the top left corner of each open app.

1. To quit an app, first unlock your iPhone to the home screen.

2. Double-click the square Home button at the bottom of your iPhone. A gray bar should appear with several app icons and the home screen will turn transparent.

TIP: Pressing the square “home” button returns you to the iPhone home screen, it does not “quit an app.” Most apps remain on standby.

3. Those apps that appear within the gray bar are the apps that are open and on standby. In order to quit them, touch and hold an app icon until it begins to slightly wiggle. A circular red Close icon should appear to the top left of the app.

An empty gray bar means no more apps on standby.

4. Tap the red Close icon to fully quit the application. The app should disappear.

5. Continue tapping the red close icon on other apps in the gray bar until none remain.

6. If the bar is clear, you have successfully quit all the apps on standby.

One of the main reasons we own iPhones are because of all the great apps. Some guides recommend users shut off key features (such as Location Services, Push Notifications, Bluetooth, etc.) but we don’t believe any user should be forced to choose between having a long battery life and suffering through a limited iPhone experience.

Use Location Services Only When You Need Them
iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 models can guide users both visually and verbally with turn-by-turn navigation through the built-in Location Services for the Maps app. It’s a very useful feature, but Location Services tends to be the heaviest drain on an iPhone battery. (Sometimes using the GPS service during a 30 to 45 minute drive can drain a full third of an iPhone’s battery charge.)

Location Services screen on in the iPhone Settings.

Maps aren’t the only app that use Location Services. Safari, Weather, Camera and Yelp are some other common apps that also use Location Services. Consider that the iPhone is constantly collecting info, sending data and calculating its location. All of those constant activities add up and can eventually wipe out your battery’s charge.

However, you can selectively choose when and what apps you want to utilize Location Services:

1. Unlock your iPhone or return to the home screen.

2. Go to the Settings icon.

3. Scroll down until you find the Privacy icon.

4. Tap the Privacy icon and then tap the Location Services icon.

5. You can choose to entirely turn off Location Services OR you can leave it on and then choose which apps can use Location Services. The fewer apps you allow Location Services to use, the more battery life you will save.

Charge Your Phone Faster
And while we’re on the topic of battery charging, how about a tip on how to charge it faster? Put your iPhone in Airplane Mode (you can find the option under Settings) when you charge it. It will charge in half the time.

iPhones are versatile devices and perform many vital functions—calculator, GPS, music player, e-mail, camera, portable gaming system and so much more. But all this comes at a price. As more and more people learn how to make iPhone apps, the iPhone universe will continue to grow. Use this HOW-TO to keep your iPhone from experiencing any “energy shortages.”

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