In today's increasingly connected digital world, it is a given that the majority of smartphone owners will need to charge their device at least once each day. Yet in the early days of mobile phones, their batteries seemed to last for much longer and could survive with being charged no more than every few days.
So, what's changed? Well, it's no coincidence that the rise of the internet has played a significant role in draining smartphone batteries quicker than ever. However, there are simple steps that mobile users can take to preserve their devices' battery life for longer. Here's how.
Beware of Wi-Fi Assist
iPhone users in particular need to be wary of the Wi-Fi Assist function on their devices. Apple designed this feature so it is still possible for users to access the internet via their mobile network if their nearest Wi-Fi connection was unreliable, but the add-on can in fact be a huge drain on battery life.
What's more, because they are logging online via their network provider, consumers could find themselves being charged extra to access the web – something that Apple has gotten in trouble for in recent months.
The company is facing a fine of up to $5 million (£3.5 million) due to its failure to inform customers of these additional charges.
iPhone owners can lengthen their battery lives and prevent themselves from incurring these extra charges by going to 'settings', selecting 'mobile data' and scrolling down to find Wi-Fi Assist, before turning it off.
If you're appy and you know it…
…delete some. Apps are growing in popularity all the time – and it's no coincidence that their rise has come at the same time as rapidly decreasing battery lives.
People rely on apps for all sorts of things nowadays, from sharing photos with friends and family to checking train times and from seeing how fast they can drink a virtual pint to getting inspiration on what to cook for dinner – all valid things, we need to do in modern society, right? Maybe not…
There's no doubt that apps can be extremely useful, but it's worth taking the time to work out which ones aren't totally necessary and deleting them to free up storage space on a device, as well as increase its battery life.
It's also important to make sure that app updates are performed as quickly as possible, as a waiting upgrade can be a drain on a battery. In addition, it's helpful to disable the background refresh function for apps such as Facebook and Twitter, as these don't need to be constantly on the go, as it's likely that users will check them periodically anyway, regardless of whether or not they receive updates.
However, it is recommended that smartphone owners don't shut down every app that they open, as this can result in extra battery being used up – it's much more sensible to just limit the number that are used in the first place.
Other top tips
There are a whole host of other simple steps that can also help a smartphone battery to last longer.
For instance, switching to airplane mode when using apps or playing games can assist in increasing battery life, while keeping the use of flash to a minimum when taking photos can also help.
Something many avid smartphone users may not have considered is to simply stop checking their battery life all of the time. Constantly lighting the screen up to see what percentage it's on won't help at all!