How to improve battery life on iPhones running iOS 11


ÍOS 11 is finally out and it brings with it a ton of new user-centric features , under the hood improvements, back-end changes and refinements. iOS 11 is much more than just a small iterative update – In our official review , we called it an extremely comprehensive update which not only brings with it many user demanded features but also a clean minimalist look to all first party applications.

Even though iOS 11 is the biggest update to Apple’s mobile operating system in years, installing it bring with its own share of caveats – the biggest among them being reduced battery life. In the iPad, it does not matter that much as the tablet is powered by a massive battery. However some iPhone users are seeing quite a drastic reduction in their overall battery life after installing iOS 11.

  Here are the top 10 tips to reclaim your iPhone’s battery life: (Note: Most of these battery saving tips will also work for iPhones running on iOS 10 and before)

1. The first and most pertinent thing to do is to remove any rogue applications that might be wolfing down your iPhone’s battery. Head over to Settings > Battery and you will see a neat list of apps that have used the most power in the last 24 hours and the last 2 days. See if there are any warning signs – if any app has been using way too much power than required. You can either limit the use of those.

2. Another extremely important thing to do which has a profound impact on an iPhone’s battery life is preventing the amount of apps running in the background. Background App Refresh is a feature found in iOS that automatically updates apps that you use most often in the background. While this sounds just marvelous and wonderful, it’s actually an incredible drain on your battery. Head on over to Settings > General > Background App Refresh and either disable the feature entirely (this is what I do when I use an iPhone) or disable it for the apps you use less frequently.

3. iOS has many, many animations all over the place that looks very cool but are quite a drain on the battery. It also has a parallax effect which causes the wallpaper to move as you tilt the iPhone (again – a battery hog). Do your battery and the overall speed of the UI a favour by heading over to Settings > General > Accessibility > Reduce Motion and turning on the feature.

4. This may sound simple but do not forget to turn Wi-Fi, Cellular, Bluetooth and Location off after you are done using them – especially Location as GPS can be a huge drain on the iPhone’s battery. Also while you are at it, head over to Settings > Privacy > Location Services > System Services and turn off Location for services such as Diagnostics and Usage. Location-Based iAds, Popular Near Me and Settings Time Zone which are not required by most iPhone users. Do not worry, Location for these services can be safely turned off. Also ensure Personal Hotspot is off when you do not need it – that is a big battery killer.

5. By default, your iPhone is configured to fetch mail via Push – which means you will receive a new mail as soon as it comes in. If you want to save battery life, you can configure your secondary or even your main e-mail account to fetch mail every hour or so. If you really want to go crazy in terms of battery conservation, you can even change the mail fetch settings to manual. Head on over to Settings > Mail > Accounts > Fetch New Data and then select your preference. I recommend selecting every 30 minutes as that strikes the perfect balance between convenience and battery saving.

6. The display sucks a lot of battery. Here are a few battery saving tips related to the same. Firstly, reduce the screen brightness – the brighter the screen, the more energy it consumes. Dim the screen by heading over to Display & Brightness and moving the brightness slider as needed. Turning on Auto Brightness is recommended as then your iPhone will automatically tune the brightness in relation to the surroundings.

7. Head on over to Mobile Data, scroll down to the bottom of the settings page and turn off a feature called Wi-Fi Assist. This basically switches over to Mobile Data whenever Wi-Fi connectivity is poor automatically. This not only hampers battery life but sometimes becomes very inconvenient as there are places in your home where Wi-Fi signal is poor but you want to remain connected to Wi-Fi.

8. If you already have an Apple Watch or a fitness tracker from the likes of Fitbit or Garmin or you do not really care about fitness tracking in the first place, you can turn off your iPhone’s fitness/motion tracking feature and save yourself some battery life. In order to do so, head over to Settings > Privacy > Motion & Fitness and turn the feature off.

9. Clubbing a bunch of tips in one point. Firstly, use your iPhone’s Low Power mode when your battery starts to run low or go crazy and keep it enabled all the time. To do so, head on to Settings > Battery and then move the Low Power Mode slider to the on position. Secondly, do not automatically upload photos to iCloud – only upload those photos to the cloud which you actually want to. To turn off auto upload, tap Settings > Photos & Camera > My Photo Stream and move the slider to the off position. Lastly, turn off auto app updates. Head over to Settings > iTunes & App Store and turn off automatic downloads for updates.

10.  If you have an iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus or an iPhone 5s – basically older generation iPhones running on the Apple A8 and A7 chip – do not update to iOS 11, at least until the iOS 11.1 update comes out which fixes most of the bugs and battery drain issues. For iPhone 5s users my recommendation is not to install the iOS 11 update at all. If the battery problems does not hit you, your iPhone will definitely slow down quite a bit after the update.

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