How can I make my tablet battery last longer?

Tired of seeing your power run down at a frightening pace? Here are seven great tips to give yourself more time while working on the move

If you use your tablet for business, running out of power at the wrong time can be disastrous.

Making sure your battery is fully charged before heading out the door is an obvious starting point, but battery life is finite and sometimes it’s not possible to charge up on the move.

If you know you’re going to be away from a power source for a while, or simply want to reduce how often you need to charge up, here are a few simple tricks to make your tablet’s battery last longer.

Use power-saving features

Many tablets come with an energy-saving mode built-in that disables non-essential features such as GPS and reduces processor performance to extend battery life. It goes by different names on different tablets, but if your tablet has such a feature, you’ll find it in your Settings. This mode is typically set up to activate automatically once your battery life drops below a certain level, but you can switch it on yourself at any time.

Dim the screen

Simply lowering your screen brightness can have a surprising impact on battery life. Dimming the screen isn’t always practical, but even if you only reduce the brightness a little, it’s guaranteed to reduce its power usage. Similarly, reducing the amount of time your tablet waits before turning the screen off when idle can also make a difference.

Get the full picture

If you’re not sure what’s causing your battery life to drain, you can get a detailed breakdown of how much power each app or service has used since your last charge, with the option to switch them off individually from there. You’ll find it in different places on different tablets: on an iPad, for example, it’s to be found in Settings / General / Usage / Battery Usage, while on Android it’s tucked away in Settings / Battery. There isn’t a similar tool for Windows-based tablets, but if you’re running Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 with InstantGo enabled, check out the Sleep Study app, which monitors your tablet’s activity through the night and generates a detailed report on what’s draining your battery. Search online for a Microsoft blog post revealing more details on Sleep Study and how to install it.

Kill your connections

Your tablet has all kinds of connectivity options to keep you in touch with the world around you, such as WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS. These constantly scan for new connections and networks so that they’re ready whenever you need them, but if you know you’re not going to be using them, switch them off so they’re not using up precious battery life unnecessarily.

Switch off fancy live graphics

Similarly, fancy wallpapers and live widgets look great on screen and keep your finger on the pulse of the world around you at all times, but they’re also extremely power-hungry. Switching to more frugal static alternatives will not only make your tablet’s battery last longer, but will improve overall performance too.

Battery management

Regardless of how much load you put on it, the process of using and recharging your battery causes the battery itself to lose efficiency over time. It’s recommended that you allow the battery to completely discharge, then completely recharge, every 30 charges. This helps recalibrate the battery’s capacity gauge, which your tablet uses to tell you how much battery life is left.

Auto-sync

Many apps and services like email, Facebook and LinkedIn automatically sync with your online accounts to ensure you always have the latest, most accurate information at your fingertips, but this involves a constant flow of data back and forth between your tablet and the web. We’re not suggesting these should be switched off for good, but if you’re concerned about battery life, turn them off temporarily until you’re able to charge up again.

This article was produced in partnership with O2 Business. To be inspired or read more about working anywhere, working smarter, marketing, and for tech advice go to businessblog.o2.co.uk

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