8 Ways to Conserve Cell Phone Battery Power

Many people have chucked their land-line phone and use only their cell phone now. As a result, cell phones get heavy usage, and if you've got a smartphone, other features add to the mix. The battery is being called upon to do a lot of work, so it pays to eliminate those unnecessary power drains that sap the battery charge. 

8 Ways to Conserve Cell Phone Battery Power

  1. A lot of phones have a power conservation mode; use it if it's available.
  2. Turn display brightness down or use an automatic brightness setting
  3. Lower your timeout settings which reduces brightness after x amount of seconds.
  4. Wifi consumes less power; use it if it's available. However, remember that having Wifi always enabled will also drain your battery more since your device will search for it. If you're traveling or not in a Wifi hotspot, turn Wifi off. 
  5. Turn GPS, Bluetooth, and NFC off when not in use.
  6. If you use a lot of apps, consider paying for them since they will be less draining. Paid apps don't have ads like the free ones do.
  7. Get rid of all extra display widgets and wallpaper.
  8. Go into the Airplane Mode if you're only using the phone for admin tasks. The Airplane Mode kills all send or receive communications but still allows you to use your calendar, draft emails, and other non-communicative phone features.

Keep in mind that a cell phone battery is not cheap. By following the above list, you are decreasing the rate of power consumption, which equates to fewer battery recharging sessions. Remember that a battery can only be recharged so many times and then a replacement will be necessary. 

In the beginning, like any new set of habits, this might seem a little constrictive but over time you will see the positive results. And saving yourself the frustration of your battery going dead while waiting for an important call could in itself be worth the effort!

Benefit by Using WiFi With Your Cell Phone

Does your cell phone bill ever go down? Not in a million years, right? And I know a number of people who have to keep going to a higher tier plan because of all the minutes they consume. One of the best tips I can think of for saving those precious phone plan minutes is using WiFi to make calls. 

2 Good reasons for Using WiFi to Make Calls

  • Using WiFi does not count toward your "on-air" phone plan minutes.
  • If you live in an area where you don't get a good signal, or maybe a completely non-existent signal, going to WiFi could solve the problem since you're not using a cell phone tower.

Get a Router for Home WiFi

Okay, here's the downside, although it's not too down. If you don't already have a wireless router/WAP (Wireless Access Point), you will need one if you use your cell phone frequently at your house. You can get a good wireless router at an electronics or PC store for about $70, along with a Cat-5 cable (a few dollars) to connect the router to your cable modem. 

When you make a call, you are going from your phone to the router wirelessly, and the router sends the voice data over a connected Internet line via your cable modem. Also keep in mind that you can connect to a WiFi public hotspot with the phone, just like you can with your laptop, so if you're in a Starbucks having coffee, you're all set. 

Most of the cell phones now have WiFi capability. Go into your phone's System Settings to locate it. If this is a challenge, your phone manual will tell you exactly how to find it on your specific model. Once you've found it, make sure to enable it. I have an LG Viper smartphone, and it will also keep track of how many minutes I used the WiFi, a great feature that I love. You should not notice much of a difference using the WiFi in terms of call quality; in fact the quality is quite good. 

Other Router Benefits

There's also a non-phone related side benefit to having the router. Now you can compute from anywhere in the house. If you enjoy sitting on the couch in the living room while computing, you can now do it and surf the Web. You can also relocate your desktop PC to a better location if its current spot is not to your liking. If you've purchased a PC within the last few years, it probably has WiFi capability. If not you can purchase an adapter for it for about $30 dollars.

There are a number of benefits to using WiFi and who knows, it just might make the difference in your phone bill so you don't have to buy that more expensive plan. That should definitely put a smile on your face.

WiFi LTE Phones, Laptops, and Tablets

The technology field has some interesting terms, doesn't it; LTE, WiFi to name just a couple. It can be confusing, especially if you're a cell-phone user (who isn't), or have a need for a laptop or tablet PC and need Internet connectivity through the best means possible.  You used to hear LTE associated more with mobile usage and WiFi with PC usage. With tablet PCs now a standard niche in the PC industry, many of us are hearing both terms used. Let's look at these two terms, LTE and WiFi, and break it down so it makes sense, not only from a mobile perspective but from a PC perspective as well.

LTE Cell Phone Coverage

LTE stands for Long Term Evolution and is associated with the term 4G, which means 4th Generation. Prior to LTE, 4G was the cutting-edge Internet connectivity standard associated with mobile phones, enabling the user a 3 to 8 mbps speed. With 4G LTE, the fastest technology, a 5 to 12 mbps is possible. Contrast those speeds with 3G, at 800kbps to 1mbps. A substantial portion of the U.S. is still operating mobile networks with 3G, although the major mobile network carriers, Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint have converted over a considerable coverage area already to 4g LTE, and continue to convert over to it regularly. Recently, carrier T-Mobile is now beginning to convert to 4G LTE networks as well.

Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint LTE Coverage

Many Internet users who travel and use a laptop on their trips need to be able to connect to the Internet. For years now, they have been able to do that through the mobile network (cell phone towers). And for several years, they have used 3G connectivity speeds until 4G came along and improved their speed. Now, the fastest of the 3 technologies, 4g LTE, is slowly becoming the new standard, although much of the U.S. is still not converted over to it.  Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint currently have LTE networks in place. As of October, Verizon has over 400 LTE markets established, AT&T has 60 markets, and Sprint has 24 markets. All 3 carriers are increasing that count regularly so if your area is not yet covered, be patient.  

Tethering

To enable Internet connectivity via the mobile network, you used to need a PC card, commonly referred to as an air-card, which was inserted into the laptop; however that setup has been for the most part, replaced. Today, the popular feature known as tethering, tethers the laptop to your cell phone. The plan pricing is based on amount of data transfer and most carriers offer it for a set monthly fee. 

Tablet Usage

LTE is now an optional model for table PCs. The Apple iPad is offered with a LTE capability, and the 4th generation iPad offers two frequency ranges, so that it can be used outside the U.S. It is not a popular option for most of the tablet industry, although with time, we should be seeing it as a viable model option with most tablet makers. 

LTE is a great feature to have if you watch a lot of streaming video, or do a lot of downloading. It will improve the performance of both of those evolutions and certainly should be a consideration if you fall into that category of user.