10 battery-boosting tips for the GALAXY S4

In addition to the Samsung GALAXY S4’S handy Power saving mode, available in the notification bar to help you save power and extend battery life, there are a number of top tips to ensure you get the most out of your S4.

Step 1: Automatic brightness is your friend

Perhaps most important of all, you should know that the screen accounts for around 50 per cent of the battery drain on your GALAXY S4. Now sure, it might seem like there’s little point having an S4 if you’re not going to utilise that beautiful 5-inch Full HD Super AMOLED screen – but if longer life is more important, you can still save yourself some juice without sacrificing too much brightness.

 

S4 battery
 

Let the S4 do the hard work for you

Automatic brightness (activated within the Display section of your settings) adjusts the screen’s brightness based on the surroundings, so it’ll crank it up when you pound the sunny pavement, but dial it right down when you’re reading a book in bed.

Best of all, once you’ve turned it on, you don’t have to do a thing – the GALAXY S4 manages everything automatically.
 

Step 2: Email

After the screen, one massive battery-buzzkill is push email. Having a constant connection to the server (which is what push email does) not only burns through your data allowance, but it also nukes your battery, working as a constant drain throughout the day.

 

S4 battery

Now you have a real reason to turn those pesky emails off

Rather than having the constant syncing of push, then, the next-best option is a frequent ‘fetch’. Head to the settings for your email account, then select the sync frequency as being once every five minutes or so, depending on how urgent your work tends to be. So, those pesky spamming scammers can still bother you, but only at fifteen-minute intervals!
 

Step 3: Monitor your apps

After your screen and pushed emails, what drains your smartphone’s battery the most will depend on just how you use your phone. Thankfully, your GALAXY S4 has a power monitor built in.

 

S4 battery

Just head to the Battery section in Settings, and you’ll see a blow-by-blow breakdown of which apps are using the most juice. If they’re not ones you use regularly, think about disabling or uninstalling them to save yourself a few amps.



Step 4: Time’s up

Back to that battery screen. Another little trick you can do to save a couple of extra percentage points is decreasing the screen timeout.
 

S4 battery

Think of it like turning the lights out. Only automatic

This is how long the screen will stay on since you last used your GALAXY S4. The longer the timeout, the longer the screen will stay on, and the harder that poor battery will have to work. You’ll find the right setting in the Display menu. Thirty seconds is probably long enough, after all.

We should also mention Samsung’s superb Smart Stay eye-tracking feature at this point, which ensures that you keep the screen on only for as long as you need it.


Step 5: Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

Those two marvels of modern technology, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, seem pretty amazing when you’re streaming Get Lucky off the internet, through your S4 and into your Bluetooth headphones.

But when you’re doing neither of those things, and just trying to keep your phone alive, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are evil devils, using up a whole tonne of battery power for no immediate benefit.

 

S4 battery

Just look at those cute little toggles. Now you’ve got no excuse for ignoring them

With the S4’s marvellous TouchWiz UI, you can turn both of them off whenever you’re not using them – just swipe down from the top of the screen, and tap the Bluetooth and Wi-Fi icons. Yeah, that easy.


Step 6: Flight mode

Sometimes you really don’t need to be disturbed by the world. Rather than just switching your GALAXY S4 onto silent during your little internal meditation sessions, switch your phone onto Flight mode instead.

 

S4 battery

Pop your S4 into Flight mode to preserve power

You can either hold down the power key for instant access to Flight mode, or, just as for Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, drag down from the top, and tap the little picture of the airplane (duh). That’ll turn off all the power-hungry radios in your phone, from the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to the more powerful 2G, 3G and 4G radios that normally suck down data.

It’s worth doing the same thing if you ever find yourself out of network coverage – the GALAXY S4, dogged as it is, will keep searching for a data signal. Putting it out of its misery by turning on airplane mode will save you loads of battery life.



Step 7: Background apps

Your GALAXY S4 is great for multi-tasking – the ability to Multi Window a Google search while watching YouTube is nothing short of God-like.
 

S4 battery

Kill ‘em. Kill ‘em dead

Sometimes, though, you’ll have a bunch of apps running unnecessarily in the background, chewing through your battery life like a dog through brand-new shoes.

To close some of those behind-the-scenes power hogs is easy: long-click on the home button to get to the multi-tasking pane of apps, then swipe away all the ones you don’t need.

 

Step 8: Correct charging

The unofficial motto of the SAS, according to trashy action novels, is ‘Prior Planning and Preparation Prevents Poor Performance’.


S4 battery

Try not to let your poor S4 get this close to death

Nowhere does that hold truer than with battery life. The 2,600mAh lithium-ion battery in your GALAXY S4 will perform better if it’s treated gently, rather than constantly ravaged.

Try and keep the battery north of 20 per cent; avoid short, frequent charges in favour of full charges once every day or so; and once a month, run the battery completely down, then recharge again. Not only will that increase the day-to-day battery life, but it’ll help keep your battery going for the long run.


Step 9: Cool temperature

Lithium-ion batteries don’t take well to high temperatures. You’ll notice that your GALAXY S4 comes with optimum operating temperatures; those are mostly there for the battery’s sake.

S4 battery
Okay, so charging in an icebox might be a bit excessive

In a year of typical usage at 0°C, a li-ion battery will lose about 5 per cent of its capacity. Although we wouldn’t recommend keeping your phone in the fridge overnight (we don’t want you accidentally pouring it on your cereal in the morning!), it’s worth trying to keep it out of direct sunlight, and maybe don’t leave your poor GALAXY S4 in the car overnight. It deserves better.


Step 10: Get that GPS out!


The final battery-life trick is probably one of the most important: turn GPS off when you’re not using it. The Global Positioning System is awfully clever: it uses satellites and atomic clocks to calculate your position on Earth down to a matter of metres.

 

S4 battery

Look at it, eating away your phone’s battery like it just doesn’t care

But it’s also a bit of a battery hog, so you’re best switching it off when you’re not doing precise navigation – your GALAXY S4 can work out a rough location without it, anyway.

The toggle (between Wi-Fi and Bluetooth on the S4’s drop-down settings menu) is the fastest way of whacking it on and off. And then you can enjoy a longer-life battery, and more time away from the plug, to truly make the most of your phone.
 

Back to top
Close
T3 Newsletter
Sign up to recieve the T3 newsletters by entering your details below

Your Details

As you're registering with us. we'd like to think that you'd enjoy receiving the following emails; if you'd rather not receive them, please untick the boxes:

I would like to receive other emails from T3, Future Publishing Limited and it's group companies containing news, special offers and product information
I agree to the terms of use and privacy policy and confirm that I am over 16 years of age *
Close
Log in or Join

By clicking below you agree to our terms and conditions and our privacy policy

Log in to T3.com with your preferred social network

Log in with your T3.com account

CloseJoinPlease complete these additional details

Join T3.com with your preferred social network

OR

Join T3.com

Please tick this box to confirm you are 16 years old or over

Just so we know you're human

Newsletters

I would like to receive T3 email newsletters, packed full of the latest tech news, competitions and exclusive offers.

I would like to receive other emails from T3, Future Publishing Limited and its group companies containing news, special offers and product information.

I would like to receive offers from carefully selected third Parties. We will not share your data with the third party.

Close Edit your profile

Change your password

Newsletters

I would like to receive T3 email newsletters, packed full of the latest tech news, competitions and exclusive offers.

I would like to receive other emails from T3, Future Publishing Limited and its group companies containing news, special offers and product information.

I would like to receive offers from carefully selected third Parties. We will not share your data with the third party.

Social networks

You have authorised these social networks to interact with your T3.com account.

Please ensure you deactivate or revoke access to this website from within your social networks settings to ensure all permissions are removed.

Close Forgotten your password

Forgotten your password?

Please enter the email address that you used to sign up and we'll send you a new password

Close
Forgotten password
Don't have a T3 Account? Join now