30 Tips to Save Battery on iPhone

Simple ways to use your iPhone longer

Illustration of a low-battery phone being plugged in
iStock

Anyone who’s used an iPhone for even a few days has discovered that while the device is powerful and perhaps even more fun than any other smartphone, the fun comes with a price: battery life. Any halfway-intensive iPhone user will recharge their phone every couple of days if not every single day.

There are ways to conserve iPhone battery life but many of them involve turning off services and features, which makes it a choice between all the cool things that the iPhone can do and having enough juice to do them.

Below are 30 tips to help you extend your iPhone's power, but remember that you don't need to follow every single one of them in order to save on battery life. Just use a few that make the most sense for how you use your iPhone.

Did you know that some iPhones support wireless charging? Charging your phone wirelessly won't save you any battery time, however, and might even slow down the time it takes to charge your iPhone if you're using a slow charger.

01
of 30

Prevent Background App Refresh

General, Background App Refresh, On, Toggle

There are a number of features designed to make your iPhone smarter and ready for you whenever you need it. One of these features is Background App Refresh.

This feature looks at the apps you use most often and the time of day that you use them, and then automatically updates them for you so that the next time you open one of those apps, the latest information is waiting for you.

For instance, if you always check social media at 7:30 am, iOS learns that and automatically updates your social apps before that time. Needless to say, this useful feature drains battery.

Here's how to turn off Background App Refresh on the iPhone:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Select Background App Refresh. 
  4. Either disable the feature entirely by choosing Background App Refresh > Off, or toggle the option off for specific apps only.
02
of 30

Buy an Extended Life Battery

Mophie juice pack air

Mophie 

Another great way to save iPhone battery life is to just get more battery. Accessory makers like mophie offer extended life batteries for the iPhone.

If you need so much battery life that none of these tips help you enough, an extended life battery is your best bet. You'll get days more standby time and many hours more use.

03
of 30

Don't Automatically Update Apps

iTunes & App Store, Update toggle OFF

Another iPhone battery saving tip (if you have iOS 7 or newer) is to disable the feature that automatically updates apps as new versions are released.

Convenient for sure, but also a huge battery drainer. Update apps manually when you have the juice for it, but otherwise, turn off automatic app updates:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to iTunes & App Store.
  3. Tap the button next to Updates to turn auto app updates off.
04
of 30

Don't Take App Suggestions

Edit, red dot, Remove in iOS Widgets

Suggested Apps, introduced in iOS 8, uses your location to figure out where you are and what you're near. It uses this information to determine which apps you might want to use based on where you are.

It can be neat to get, say, Walgreens alerts when you're near one of those stores, but it definitely uses extra battery life to maintain your location and communicate with the App Store.

Here's how to disable Suggested Apps in iOS 10:

This feature used to be controlled in the Settings app but moved into Notification Center starting in iOS 10.

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen to open Notification Center.
  2. Swipe to the left to the Today view.
  3. Scroll to the bottom and tap Edit.
  4. Choose the red icon next to Siri App Suggestions.
  5. Tap Remove, and then Done at the top.
05
of 30

Use Content Blockers in Safari

Slate.com on Safari with content-blockers

One of the best features introduced in iOS 9 is the ability to block advertising and tracking cookies in Safari. Surprisingly, the technologies used by advertising networks to serve up, display, and track ads can actually use a lot of battery life. 

The amount of battery power you save might not be as significant as another battery saving tip, but combine a boost in battery life with a browser that runs faster and uses less data, and it's worth checking out. 

06
of 30

Turn on Auto-Brightness

Accessibility, Display Accommodations, Auto-Brightness toggle

The iPhone has an ambient light sensor that adjusts the brightness of the screen based on the light around it. That makes it darker in dark places yet brighter when there's more ambient light, both saving battery and making it easier to use.

Turn Auto-Brightness on and you’ll save energy because your screen will need to use less power in dark places.

Here's how to do this in iOS 12 and iOS 11:

  1. Launch the Settings app.
  2. Go to General > Accessibility.
  3. Choose Display Accommodations.
  4. Tap the Auto-Brightness button.

For iOS 10 and older devices, follow these directions:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Display & Brightness (it's called Brightness & Wallpaper in iOS 7).
  3. Select the button next to Auto-Brightness to turn it on.
07
of 30

Reduce Screen Brightness

Display & Brightness, slider set low

The effect of your iPhone screen brightness is clear: the brighter your display is, the more power it requires. Fortunately, you can control the default brightness of your iPhone screen with this slider.

Keep the screen as dim as possible for your liking to save battery life.

From Settings, go to Display & Brightness (or Brightness & Wallpaper in iOS 7), and drag the button on the slider to the left to reduce the screen brightness.

08
of 30

Stop Motion & Animations

Accessibility, Reduce Motion, Toggle OFF

One of the coolest features introduced in iOS 7 is called Background Motion. It's subtle, but if you move your iPhone and watch the app icons and background image, you'll see them move slightly independently of each other, as if they're on different planes.

The parallax effect is something neat to show off and it makes your phone seem a bit more alive. However, it offers very little in real functionally and definitely takes a toll on your iPhone battery. Plus, disabling this extra motion on your iPhone can even reduce motion sickness for some people.

Here's how to turn this off to save battery:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Select Accessibility.
  4. Choose Reduce Motion.
  5. Tap the button next to Reduce Motion to make it green/on.
09
of 30

Disable Wi-Fi When You Don't Need It

Wi-Fi, toggle OFF, Wi-Fi icon in Control Center

Wi-Fi has its benefits, and can even sometimes save battery life if the signal is stronger than the one you're getting over a cellular tower. However, if you're not even around a Wi-Fi network (like when travelling), disable Wi-Fi to save battery on your iPhone.

Keeping Wi-Fi turned on at all times in hopes that an open hotspot will appear is a surefire way to drain your battery life. Connect to Wi-Fi if you can, but if you can't, it's best to disable it completely.

  1. Tap the Settings app to open it.
  2. Select Wi-Fi.
  3. Press the button next to Wi-Fi to disable it.

You can also turn off Wi-Fi via Control Center. Swipe down from the top of the screen, or up from the bottom (depending on your iPhone model), and then tap the Wi-Fi icon to make it grey.

If you have an Apple Watch, this tip doesn't apply to you. Wi-Fi is required for many features of the Apple Watch, so you won't want to turn it off.

10
of 30

Make Sure Personal Hotspot Is Off

Personal Hotspot, toggle to OFF

This tip is a huge key to getting more battery life on your iPhone, but it only applies if you use the iPhone's Personal Hotspot feature to share your wireless data connection with other devices.

Personal Hotspot turns your iPhone into a hotspot that broadcasts its cellular data to other devices within range. This is a tremendously useful feature, but as you may have guessed, it also really drains your battery.

It might be an acceptable trade when you're using it, but if you forget to turn the hotspot off when you're finished, you'll be surprised at how quickly your battery drains.

You can disable the hotspot on your iPhone from the Settings app. Tap Personal Hotspot and then tap the button next to the option to disable it.

11
of 30

Find the Battery Killers

Battery system and analytics in iOS Settings

Most of the suggestions on this list are about turning features off or not doing certain things. This battery saving tip for iPhone helps you discover which apps are killing your battery.

In iOS 8 and up, there's a feature called Battery Usage that shows which apps have been sucking the most power over the last 24 hours and the last several days. Go to Settings > Battery to check.

If you start seeing an app showing up there consistently, you'll know that running it too often is costing you battery life.

On that screen, you'll sometimes see notes beneath each item that provide more detail on why the app drained so much battery and can suggest ways for you to fix it.

12
of 30

Turn Off Location Services

Settings, Privacy, Location Services screens on iPhone

One of the coolest features of the iPhone is its built-in GPS. It's extremely useful for finding directions and locating nearby stores, restaurants, etc. However, like any service that sends data over a network, it needs battery power to work.

If you’re not using Location Services and don’t plan to right away, turn them off and save some power.

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Select Privacy.
  3. Choose Location Services.
  4. Select the button next to Location Services, and confirm with Turn Off, to disable it completely. Or, scroll down the page and choose which apps you want to deny Location Services to.
13
of 30

Turn Off Other Location Settings

Privacy, Location Services, System Services, Setting Time toggle OFF

The iPhone can perform a lot of useful tasks in the background. However, the more background activity there is — especially activity that connects to the internet or use GPS — will drain battery quickly.

Some of these features in particular aren't required by most iPhone users and can be safely turned off to regain some battery life.

  1. Go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services.
  2. Choose System Services at the bottom.
  3. Disable items such as Location-Based Apple Ads, Popular Near Me, and Setting Time Zone.

You won't see these options if you completed the previous tip and disabled all location services.

14
of 30

Don't Use Dynamic Backgrounds

Wallpaper, Choose, Stills screens on iPhone

Live and Dynamic wallpapers launched with iOS 8 and offer a neat interface to an otherwise static background image, but they, too, can affect battery life. Sticking to still wallpapers only is an easy way to save iPhone battery life.

Dynamic Backgrounds don't need to be turned off because there isn't an enable/disable Dynamic Backgrounds function. Instead, just don't select images in the Dynamic section when changing your iPhone wallpaper.

15
of 30

Turn Bluetooth Off

Bluetooth, toggle OFF in iOS Settings

Bluetooth is especially useful for users with wireless headsets or earpieces, but transmitting data wirelessly requires loads of battery, and leaving Bluetooth on to accept incoming data at all times requires even more juice.

Turn off Bluetooth to save battery on your iPhone. Or, at the very least, only enable Bluetooth when you need it, and then shut it down again when not in use.

The option to enable or disable Bluetooth on iPhone can be found in the Settings app under Bluetooth.

This tip for saving battery on iPhone doesn't apply if you also use Apple Watch. The Apple Watch and iPhone communicate over Bluetooth, so if you want to get the most out of your smart watch, you'll want to keep Bluetooth turned on.

16
of 30

Turn Cellular Data

Cellular, Cellular Data toggle to OFF

Not surprisingly, and much like Bluetooth, using 5G, 4G, LTE, or any other cellular connection with fast transfer speeds, will require more battery power from your phone. The power consumption is even worse during times of heavy usage like when streaming video or making HD calls.

While it can be tough to stop all cellular data transfers, you can be sure that doing so will drastically improve the battery life on your iPhone.

Open Settings to turn off cellular data. Just tap Cellular from the list and then select the button next to Cellular Data to make it white/disabled.

Wi-Fi still works when cellular data is turned off.

17
of 30

Turn Data Push Off

Passwords & Accounts, Fetch New Data, Push toggle OFF

The email settings on your iPhone can be configured to automatically download messages to your phone when they arrive on the email server. It's super useful to always have the most up-to-date email folders, but constant downloads like that is absolutely draining your battery faster than it needs to.

You can instead open the Mail app and refresh it manually to check for new messages.

Here's how to turn off push to save your iPhone battery life:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Passwords & Accounts or, if you don't see that, Mail > Accounts.
  3. Select Fetch New Data.
  4. Tap the button next to Push to make it disabled/white.

If you'd rather still get emails on a schedule, but just not instantly, see the tip below.

18
of 30

Fetch Email Less Often

Passwords & Accounts, Fetch New Data, Hourly checkmark

Another option for saving battery on your iPhone that involves email is to have the Mail app download new emails on a schedule. That way, you don't have to check manually but you also won't get instant updates, thus saving battery.

If this is something you're okay with it, consider changing how often your iPhone checks for new mail. When you have your phone check for mail less often, you can pick hourly, every 30 minutes, or every 15 minutes.

Here's how:

  1. Go into the Settings app.
  2. Select Passwords & Accounts or go to Mail > Accounts (on older devices).
  3. Choose Fetch New Data at the bottom of the page.
  4. Scroll to the bottom and select your preference (the longer between checks, the better for your battery).
19
of 30

Auto-Lock Sooner

Display & Brightness, Auto-Lock, 30 Seconds

You read above about how screen brightness affects battery life on your iPhone, so it makes sense that having your phone auto-lock sooner can save even more battery.

If your phone is always displaying something, whether the brightness is low or not, it will constantly require juice. The quick fix is to lock your phone whenever you think about it, but you can also adjust the auto-lock feature so that it locks automatically.

Pick an auto-lock option that works best for you, but know that anything less than Never is going to help increase your battery life (the more frequent the lock duration, the more battery savings you'll experience):

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Choose Display & Brightness.
  3. Select Auto-Lock.
  4. Pick one of the options, anything from 30 seconds up to 5 minutes.
20
of 30

Turn Off Fitness Tracking

Privacy, Motion & Fitness, Fitness Tracking toggled OFF

With the addition of the motion co-processor to the iPhone 5S and later models, the iPhone can track your steps and other fitness activity. It's a great feature, especially if you're trying to stay in shape, but that non-stop tracking can really suck up battery life.

If you're not using your iPhone to track your motion or you have a fitness band to do that for you, you can disable that feature.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Go to Privacy > Motion & Fitness.
  3. Tap the button next to Fitness Tracking to make it white/off.
21
of 30

Turn off Equalizer

Music, EQ, set to OFF

The Music app on the iPhone has an Equalizer feature that can adjust music to increase bass, decrease treble, etc. Because these adjustments are made on the fly, they require extra battery. You can turn the equalizer off to conserve battery.

However, please know that disabling equalizer means you'll have a slightly modified listening experience. The power savings might not be worth it to true audiophiles, but for those hoarding battery power, it's a good deal.

To save battery life on your iPhone by disabling the equalizer feature, just open Settings and go to Music > EQ > Off.

22
of 30

Disable Cellular Calls Through Other Devices

Phone, Calls on Other Devices, Toggle ON

This tip only applies if you have a Mac running OS X 10.10 (Yosemite) or higher and an iPhone running iOS 8 or higher.

If your iPhone and Mac are on the same Wi-Fi network, calls can be placed and answered through your Mac using your phone's cellular connection. This basically turns your Mac into an extension of your iPhone.

As great of a feature it is, it does drain battery on your iPhone. To turn this feature off, open Settings and go to Phone > Calls on Other Devices. Slide the toggle next to Allow Calls on Other Devices to off/white.

23
of 30

Turn AirDrop Off Unless You're Using It

General, AirDrop, Receiving Off

AirDrop, the wireless file-sharing feature Apple introduced in iOS 7, can be extremely handy. In order to use AirDrop on your iPhone, you need to turn on both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and set your phone to be looking for other AirDrop-enabled devices.

As with any feature that uses wireless technologies, the more you use it, the more battery you'll drain. To save juice on your iPhone, keep AirDrop turned off unless you're using it. 

Control whether AirDrop receiving is on or off through Control Center. Just swipe down from the top of the screen or up from the bottom, and then tap the AirDrop button. Choose Receiving Off to disable it.

Another way to customize how AirDrop works is through Settings > General > AirDrop.

24
of 30

Don't Automatically Upload Photos to iCloud

Photos, iCloud Photos toggle OFF

As you've learned throughout this list of battery saving tips for iPhone, any time you're uploading data, you're running down your battery. You could argue that any use of your phone is using your battery, and while that's absolutely true, uploading files is a big offender.

You should make sure that you're always intentionally uploading, rather than automatically doing it in the background. Since the Photos app can automatically upload your images to your iCloud account, this is the first place to check.

Turn off auto-uploads and only upload from your computer or when you have a full battery. Here's how to check whether photos are always uploading to iCloud:

  1. Tap Settings to open the app.
  2. Choose Photos or (for older devices) Photos & Camera.
  3. Select the button next to iCloud Photos or iCloud Photo Library.
25
of 30

Don't Send Diagnostic Data to Apple or Developers

Privacy, Analytics, Share iPhone Analytics toggle to OFF

Sending diagnostic data — anonymous information about how your device is working or not working that helps Apple improve its products — to Apple is a helpful thing to do and something you choose during your device setup.

In iOS 9, you can also choose to send data to developers. In iOS 10, the settings get even more granular with an option for iCloud analytics, too.

Regularly and automatically uploading data uses battery, so if you have this feature turned on and need to conserve energy, turn it off. 

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Go to Privacy > Analytics.
  3. Move all the sliders to the off/white position.
26
of 30

Disabled Unneeded Vibrations

Sounds, Vibrate on Ring toggle OFF

Your iPhone can vibrate to get your attention for calls and other alerts, but in order to vibrate, the phone has to trigger a motor that shakes the device, a task that uses battery and is unnecessary if you have a ringtone or alert tone to get your attention.

Instead of keeping vibration on all the time, just use it when necessary (like when your ringer is off). To turn off this feature, open Settings and go to Sounds (or Sounds & Haptics), and then select the button next to Vibrate on Ring to turn it off.

27
of 30

Use Low Power Mode

Battery, Low Power Mode toggle, Battery icon in Control Center

If you're really serious about conserving battery life on your iPhone and don't want to turn off all these settings one by one, try a feature introduced in iOS 9 called Low Power Mode. 

Low Power Mode does exactly what its name says it does: shuts down all non-essential features on your iPhone to conserve as much power as possible. Apple claims that turning this on will get you up to three hours.

Enable Low Power Mode from Settings > Battery. Another way is through Control Center; tap the battery icon to enable/disable it.

28
of 30

Shut Down Apps Less Often

Swiping up on iOS app to force quit

On the topic of tips for saving battery life on your iPhone, you'll often hear that quitting your apps when you're done with them, rather than letting them run in the background, is beneficial.

This is wrong. In fact, regularly quitting your apps in that way can actually make your battery drain faster. Re-launching an app over and over can use more battery than just letting it hang in the background.

If battery savings is important to you, feel free to keep your apps open when you're not using them.

29
of 30

Run Down Your Battery As Much As Possible

Low iphone battery indicator

Believe it or not, the more frequently you charge the iPhone battery, the less energy it can hold. Counter-intuitive, perhaps, but it's one of the quirks of modern batteries.

Over time, the battery remembers the point in its drain at which you recharge it and starts to treat that as its limit. 

For example, if you always charge your iPhone when it still has 75 percent of its battery left, the battery will eventually start to behave as if it's total capacity is 75 percent, not the original 100 percent.

The way to get around your battery losing capacity in this way is to use your phone as long as possible before charging it. Try waiting until its down to having just 20 percent (or even less!) of battery left before charging. Just make sure to not wait too long.

30
of 30

Do Less Battery-Intensive Things

Battery power illustration

Not all battery saving methods involve making changes in the Settings app. Some have to do with how you use your phone from day to day.

Tasks that require your phone to be on for long periods of time or use a lot of system resources, suck the most battery.

Here are some examples of the biggest battery hogging activities:

  • Movie and music streaming
  • Video games
  • Web browsing
  • Downloading apps and other files
  • Uploading content to the internet

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