How to Improve Battery Life on Your Cellphone

In spite of all the great leaps forward in cellphone technology over the years, the whole enterprise still depends on nursing as much life as possible out of your device’s humble battery. Since we all love cutting edge conveniences like crisp HD screens, super-fast processors, and 4G LTE, remember: they all demand extra juice, so it’s important to do all you can to keep your power supply in good working order.

You’ll find plenty of tips out there about how to get more battery life. Some make good sense; others are of little practical value. Trust me—I’ve tried them all! So my list here is narrowed to a few simple things that consistently work well for me.

First, understand that certain activities use more battery power than others. Streaming video and GPS navigation are two of the biggest culprits. They require your phone’s screen to stay on constantly, and they make steady use of cellular and Wi-Fi connections—each of which requires a tremendous amount of energy. If your battery is getting low, or if you need it to last longer on a particular day, avoid video streaming and turn off the GPS feature unless you’re connected to a power source.

Your screen consumes more energy than any other component, so the simplest method to preserve battery life is to turn down your screen brightness. If you don’t want to do this manually, many smartphones include an auto-brightness mode in the Display settings. By turning this feature on, brightness will automatically adjust based on the amount of ambient light present—you don’t have to worry about squinting at a dim screen outdoors, or a super bright one indoors.

Batteries are also extremely sensitive to heat and cold—you’ll get the longest battery life by using your phone between temperatures of 62° to 72° Fahrenheit. This isn’t meant to suggest that your phone won’t work during winter in Minnesota, or summertime in the deep south— but it does mean your battery life could be impacted with long term exposure to the elements. And while your battery will recover from cold after it’s had a chance to warm up, heat can cause permanent damage. Never charge, or store, your phone in extremely hot environments, like inside your car on a scorching July afternoon or plugged into an outlet beneath a bright, sunny window.

Finally, if you’re travelling and need to use GPS and Bluetooth along the way, invest in a car charger. This simple, affordable accessory allows you to keep your phone plugged into a power source while it utilizes these energy-heavy activities—plus it keeps you from being inconvenienced by a drained battery once you arrive at your destination!

There’s no single magical way to ensure longer battery life. Instead, every little step helps it add up. It’s a lot like nursing a small savings account—if you focus on saving one penny at a time, it will assure you’ve got enough to make a real difference when you need it most.

51 Thoughts on "How to Improve Battery Life on Your Cellphone"

  1. James david Phelps says

    I got a new phone for from the company. The phone says the sims card is invalid?? It is the card that came with the Phone? I had the Phone activated, but I can’t make calls. Please advise me on what I should do.

    reply to James

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for reaching out to us, James. Please try turning your phone off, then back on again. This will often allow your phone to reconnect to a nearby tower, resolving the problem. If the issue persists, please give us a call at 888-345-5509 and we can troubleshoot further. If possible, it’s best to call from another phone so that we can walk you through any steps needed. We appreciate you posting today!

      reply to Ashley

  2. Wendell McAllister says

    I think that you need to offer more Data options. I am a Uber Driver and I use more Data as I am sure more people are now requiring more Data.

    reply to Wendell

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for the feedback, Wendell. We understand that users like yourself may need more data for apps such as Uber and others that require GPS. Our largest plan does offer 4GB of data, and we recommend using Wi-Fi as well to enjoy your phones features and save data for when you really need it. I’ve passed your thoughts on to our management team, and we appreciate you taking the time to post your suggestion. We hope you have a wonderful day!

      reply to Ashley

      • Jessica Bell says

        I agree fully .. I use about 5-6GB of data a month.. I have 3 people on my plan and we use wifi when we can. I think having a lil bit bigger data plan would be fantastic!

        reply to Jessica

  3. Gayle Vyskocil says

    I understand you don’t have international service, so I wonder if you have a work-around that allows communication when traveling in Europe or other parts of the world. Is email accessible on your phones when traveling overseas? I don’t travel overseas all the time but do go often enough I’d like to be accessible to my family here in the States. Thanks.

    reply to Gayle

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Great question, Gayle! We recommend keeping your phone in Airplane mode when you’re overseas. That way, your phone won’t try to connect to international towers, which could result in expensive roaming fees. You can keep up with friends and family by using a Wi-Fi connection. Then you’ll be able to use apps such as Skype for video chats, Google Hangouts or iMessage for texting and you can check your email. We’re happy to talk with you more about this at 888-345-5509. Thank you for posting, and we wish you many happy travels!

      reply to Ashley

      • Thomas says

        I use 2-step verification on several of my accounts (email and bank, etc), which means I have to be able to receive a texted code after logging in to be able to use them. Will I be able to receive these texted codes while traveling in Mexico and Europe if I leave the iPhone 5s in Airplane mode?

        reply to Thomas

        • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

          Thank you for asking, Thomas. If your phone is placed in Airplane Mode, you won’t be able to receive SMS messages. With an iPhone, you may be able to use iMessage while connected only to Wi-Fi. We recommend talking with your email provider and bank to see if they can contact you via iMessage or email in addition to the SMS messages. If we can answer any other questions you may have about using your phone while traveling, please give us a call at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you taking the time to post today!

          reply to Ashley

  4. John says

    Can you tell me how to open a voice mail?

    reply to John

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      We’re happy to help you with that, John. If you haven’t already, you’ll need to setup your voicemail box. You can start this process by pressing and holding the “1” key on your device. This will connect you with the voicemail system, and you’ll just need to follow the prompts to setup a password and check your messages. We even have a helpful video showing you how to it here. Once your mailbox is setup, you can press and hold the “1” key to enter the voicemail system, or you can check it from another phone as well. You’ll just want to dial your phone number, then enter your password once you hear the greeting. We’re happy to answer any other questions you may have at 888-345-5509. Thank you for posting, and we hope you have a wonderful day!

      reply to Ashley

  5. Vivian says

    I’m having trouble answering calls. I slide the phone icon to the right, but it doesn’t connect, and sometimes the call goes to vm before I can answer it. Any solutions? Also having trouble hearing. I’m hearing impaired and have it on the HAC and still have trouble.

    reply to Vivian

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      We’re so sorry to hear that, Vivian. I took a look at your account, and I see that you are using the Doro 824 SmartEasy. If you like, we may be able to assist you with adjusting the number of rings before your calls go to voicemail. We also recommend wiping your screen with a clean, dry cloth to ensure that you have the best touchscreen experience. Please feel free to give us a call at 888-345-5509, and we can troubleshoot any issues you’re having with the ring length and your hearing aid connection. Our representatives will be happy to assist you! Thank you for taking the time to post today, and we look forward to speaking with you soon!

      reply to Ashley

  6. david rosa says

    I have found the new setup to be totally useless. It does not allow me to obtain the usage of my monthly usage.

    reply to david

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      We certainly apologize for any confusion, David. The best way to view your usage is to login to My Account, or if you have a smartphone, with the My Consumer Cellular app. We’re also happy to help you over the phone as well at 888-345-5509. Thank you for posting, and we hope you have a great day!

      reply to Ashley

  7. Judy Ryan says

    My phone doesn’t ring, It goes directly to voicemail.

    reply to Judy

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      We’re happy to troubleshoot that for you Judy. Please give us a call at 888-345-5509 when you have a moment and we can work with you to get that resolved. Thank you for reaching out to us!

      reply to Ashley

  8. paul j stlaureny says

    I own a Doro phone, it has to be charged every day, which is annoying as I don’t use this phone daily. When I need it, it is always dead. Is it because I bought a 50.00 phone?

    reply to paul

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for asking, Paul. Depending on where you live and how you use your phone, it is not uncommon for any cellphone to need to be charged daily. We recommend getting into a habit of charging it every day so it is always ready to go. You may also find that a car charger is helpful so you can recharge your Doro while on the road. We’re happy to talk with you about this further over the phone at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you posting today, and we hope you have a great day!

      reply to Ashley

  9. Lucy says

    Why isn’t the iPhone 7 on the payment plan option?

    reply to Lucy

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Great news, Lucy! The iPhone 7 is also available with EasyPay. Depending on the option you choose, you’ll make one low down-payment, and then pay $25 a month interest-free until the balance is paid. You can get started online here, or we can help you at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you taking the time to post today!

      reply to Ashley

  10. Charlene Perry says

    I would like to know why you do not have a “roll over” plan for data which we pay for every month but may not use and instead lose at the end of that billing period? It is like throwing away the five pound bag of sugar because you only needed to use a cup of it this month!

    reply to Charlene

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for posting, Charlene. We never want our customers to pay for more than they need, and that’s why we offer flexible plans. You can change your plan up until the last day of your billing cycle. That way, you can drop down to a lower plan at the end of the month if you find you don’t need as much data. We’re always happy to help you change your plan over the phone at 888-345-5509, or you can do it from the My Consumer Cellular app or through the My Account section of our website. We appreciate you taking the time to post, and we hope you have a great day!

      reply to Ashley

  11. Charlene Perry says

    Thank you Ashley, I still think a roll over would be a nice feature because some months we have need of more data and some we need far less and from what I have seen of your plans four is as high as they go unless you go all the way up to ten? Is that not correct?

    reply to Charlene

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you, Charlene, I’m happy to clarify. Our largest plan available is for 4GB of data. If you surpass that limit, you can add additional GB’s for $10 each up to a maximum of 10GB. However, this additional data won’t be available with high-speeds. I’ve passed your comments regarding a roll-over option on to our management team, so thank you for giving us that feedback. If you would like to discuss your plan or make any changes, just give us a call at 888-345-5509 and we will be happy to help you. We appreciate you taking the time to post, and we hope you have a wonderful day!

      reply to Ashley

      • Charlene Perry says

        Hello again Ashley, Ten dollars per GB does not seem like a real bargain to me and why would the speed be any less?? I don’t think I am the only customer that may be interested in the answers to these questions so I like to see the answers here in the blog. Maybe if there are enough of us that want a better deal on our Data plans, Consumer will come up with something more equitable for us. Thank you for your time

        reply to Charlene

        • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

          We appreciate the feedback, Charlene. At this time, our largest plan is 4GB, but we know that sometimes, our customers may need just a bit more on occasion. That’s why we do offer the option of buying more data, so that you are still able to search the internet or perform other tasks if you need to. That being said, we know that our plans aren’t for everyone, so customers needing more than 4GB of data may find that our plans aren’t quite the right fit. Most of our customers find value in their ability to change their plan, so they never pay for more than they need. If you like, we can discuss this with you further at 888-345-5509. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us, and we hope you have a wonderful day!

          reply to Ashley

      • Kay Lynn Odle-Moore says

        I agree that it would be WONDERFUL to have more data available. I’ve just switched to Consumer Cellular, but was disappointed with the small amount of data available. I also agree that rollover data would be a great addition, allowing customers to utilize data at a later date that might not have been used earlier. Thanks!

        reply to Kay

        • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

          We appreciate that suggestion, Kay Lynn! I’ve passed it on to our management team, so thank you for taking the time to post. In general, most of our customers find the true value of their plan in the ability to switch plans, so they don’t need to pay for more data than they are using. Thank you again for the feedback, and we hope you have a great day!

          reply to Ashley

  12. Joe Clark says

    Is it possible to block specific phone numbers?

    reply to Joe

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for commenting, Joe. Unfortunately, we don’t have that option available for your device, the Consumer Cellular Envoy. We do recommend that you list your number with the National Do Not Call registry, which you can find here. If you like, we can talk with you more about this over the phone at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you taking the time to post, and we hope you have a great day!

      reply to Ashley

  13. Hiram Claytor says

    We just changed to over to your company. I got the new Doro 3G flip phone and my wife kept her Samsung ALPHA 4G. I have tried sending her pictures. Her phone says to click download to open pictures, butn all it does is churn for a while and then quit. She has not been able to open 1 picture that I took with my new DORO and sent to her. We never had problems sending picture, EVER, with AT&T. Why is this and what can we do?

    reply to Hiram

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for reaching out to us, Hiram. We may need to send some updates to your wife’s phone so that she can receive those picture messages. Please give us a call at 888-345-5509 at your convenience, and we will be happy to troubleshoot this issue with you. We appreciate you taking the time to post!

      reply to Ashley

      • Steve Totten says

        My new Galaxy S7 will not open pix in SMS messages either. My wife and I are new users on this system and may just not know how to do things properly yet.

        reply to Steve

        • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

          Welcome to Consumer Cellular, Steve! I took a look at your account, and I see that you are using our SIM cards with your smartphones. If you are not receiving picture messages, we may need to update some device settings. Please give us a call at 888-345-5509, and we will be happy to get that taken care of. Thank you for posting, and we hope you have a wonderful day!

          reply to Ashley

  14. Charlene Perry says

    Don’t waste your time Joe, the do not call number is totally ignored and those pesky tele-marketing calls still come. When you stay on the line in order to tell them that you are on the list they hang up on you! I don’t even answer my phone anymore if I don’t recognize the number! One would think out favorite telephone company would be able to do something for us!

    reply to Charlene

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for posting, Charlene. We have had some customers with smartphones say that certain call blocking apps have worked quite well for them. Many block known numbers associated with scams, so we recommend searching for one in the Google Play store or App store. If you find one that works quite well, please feel free to share here!

      reply to Ashley

  15. Susan says

    Is there a way to print this blog entry and the comments so that I can refer to this topic later without having to come on to my account? Some of the questions and answers are very helpful to me as a new smart phone user.

    reply to Susan

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      We’re so glad to hear that you’re finding the blog to be useful, Susan. Depending on the browser that you are using, you should be able to find a print option so that you can keep a copy of our posts for your records. Most of the time, this option can be found at the top right corner of your internet browser. If we can answer any questions or make any adjustments to your account, please feel free to call us at 888-345-5509. Thank you for posting, and we hope you have a great day!

      reply to Ashley

  16. Sue says

    I am looking for a hard/jel protective case for Doro824 phone, where can I find one.

    reply to Sue

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for asking, Sue! You can purchase a flex-gel case from us. You can order one from the My Account section of our site here, or we can assist you over the phone at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you taking the time to post today!

      reply to Ashley

  17. mark mojado says

    My phone will not charge up all the time

    reply to mark

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      That’s certainly frustrating, Mark. You may want to check the charging port on your device to make sure it is free of any dust, and double check that your charger fits properly. If not, a new charger may be able to remedy the problem. We’re happy to offer more suggestions at 888-345-5509 if you like. Thank you for posting, and please let us know how it goes!

      reply to Ashley

  18. M Samons says

    I need a Voicemail access phone number and a one click access to same.

    reply to M

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for reaching out to us! Your voicemail access number should be 904-327-8492. We’re happy to walk you through entering this into your phone at 888-345-5509. Please remember that checking your voicemail messages will use minutes from your plan, so if you have a landline, we recommend using that to save your minutes! We appreciate you posting, and we hope you have a wonderful day!

      reply to Ashley

  19. Alton Hoover says

    How much for unlimited data talk and text

    reply to Alton

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for asking, Alton. You can get unlimited minutes, texts and 500MB of data for just $40 per month. Take a look at all of your options on our Plans page here. We’re happy to talk with you about your usage and recommend a plan if you give us a call at 888-345-5509. We appreciate you posting, and we hope to speak with you soon!

      reply to Ashley

  20. Brian Anderson says

    I’ve experienced two days of “No network coverage” – what is going on here ?

    reply to Brian

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for bringing this to our attention, Brian. I’ve reviewed your area coverage, and everything looks to be in order. Please try powering your phone off, then turning it back on while outside or near a window. This will allow it to reconnect to the cellular towers. If that doesn’t resolve the issue, we’re happy to see if any updates are required or if additional troubleshooting is needed. Just give us a call at 888-345-5509 from another phone, and we’ll be ready to assist you. We appreciate you posting!

      reply to Ashley

  21. Rosemary Aloisio says

    I agree that it would be WONDERFUL to have more data available. I’ve just switched to Consumer Cellular, but was disappointed with the small amount of data available. I also agree that rollover data would be a great addition, allowing customers to utilize data at a later date that might not have been used earlier.

    reply to Rosemary

    • Ashley at Consumer Cellular says

      Thank you for sharing your feedback with us, Rosemary! I’ll pass it on to our management team so that they can review it. We love it when our customers send us their thoughts, as it assists us in creating plans that work for everyone. We appreciate you taking the time to post, and we hope you have a wonderful day!

      reply to Ashley

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