12 ways to maximise your iPad's battery

How to maximise the iPad's battery

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So you got yourself a shiny new Apple device, but you’re so addicted that the battery is running out way too soon. What you need are some tips to keep your battery running for as long as possible. Many of these tips are going to be common sense, and won’t be a surprise to the more geeky readers, but now you can always send this to your less geeky friends and relatives when they ask you how to improve their battery life.

Reduce the screen brightness

Reduce the screen brightness

If you keep the screen at maximum brightness all the time, you’re wasting a lot of battery life and the screens these days are so bright anyway that you don’t really need to, especially at night. Go to Settings -> Brightness & Wallpaper to adjust the default level of brightness, which you can probably keep as low as 30% most of the time.

Auto Brightness - if turned ON will find the most appropriate level of brightness . The iPad's screen can automatically adjust to the ambient brightness of the room its in. Using this feature will reduce drain on the iPad battery because the screen will automatically dim itself in bright locations.

Lock the screen

Lock the screen

Even if you’ve adjusted the screen brightness, there’s still no substitute for having it turn off quickly when you’re not using it. Go to Settings, General -> Auto-Lock to set the screen lock to happen as quickly as your device will let you. This makes a big difference if you are always picking up your phone and putting it back into your pocket without turning the display off.

Tap the arrow in Auto-Lock to chnage the time your iPad will remain on. Your choices in minutes: 2, 5, 10, 15 and Never. If your iPad never goes to sleep, the battery will drain very quickly.

Use Airplane Mode when you don't need the internet

Use Airplane Mode when you don

If you don't need internet access, consider using Airplane Mode which turns off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and mobile data (if you have a 3G/4G) iPad. When you’re mobilein an area with a really spotty connection, the iPad will try to stay connected at all times. It’s going to be constantly searching for a connection, which can drain your battery.

In summary - Airplane Mode will kill Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, cellular/ 3G/4G and GPS at the same time.

Use Wi-Fi instead of 3G/4G if possible

Use Wi-Fi instead of 3G/4G if possible

According to Apple, the iPad will get 10 hours of battery life under regular use with Wi-Fi enabled, but will only get 9 hours using 3G. Of course, if you’re heavily using the Wi-Fi, you’ll still be draining the battery. The point is under similar workloads, Wi-Fi is better than 3G for battery life. You can enable Wi-Fi under Settings -> Wi-Fi, and then pick the network you’d like to connect to.

Turning off WiFi when not in use – (watching a movie in the car, reading a book, etc. ) is a great idea to help create a longer lasting battery. With the WiFi radio turned off it is not searching for networks to join so therefore it is not using battery. Leave Ask to Join Networks OFF. The iPad will keep looking for networks whcih also affects battery life.

Reduce or eliminate Mail and Calendar checking - Data Push

Reduce or eliminate Mail and Calendar checking - Data Push

This feature automatically pushes data like email from the web to your iPad when it's connected to the Internet. If you’ve got some email, calendar, or contact accounts configured, and they are all being checked and downloading email on a regular basis, you’ll be draining the battery an awful lot faster than you need to.

Go to Settings -> Mail, Contacts, Calendars -> Fetch New Data and change the setting to the least frequent check possible. If you don’t use it often, you can just turn Push off entirely and then manually check when you need to.

Reduce or eliminate Push notifications

Reduce or eliminate Push notifications

Do you really need notifications from Twitter or whatever other apps you’re running? You can turn these off one-by-one, or turn off Push entirely by going to Settings -> Notifications, and save a bit of extra battery life since your device won’t be pulling in data for those applications anymore.

Go into each app and turn off Notifications.

Disable Location Services

Disable Location Services

Another form of wireless communication the iPad employs is location services. This is what powers the GPS functionality of the device. Location services are what allow apps to locate where you are and use that data to help you find a local restaurant or service. While these services are helpful they are a drain on battery power and can be turned off for certain apps that don’t really need it (clocks, games, etc.)

If you don’t really need the location services, you can disable them to save some battery life. Go to Settings -> Privacy Location Services setting to off.

Turn off Bluetooth

Turn off Bluetooth

You may be getting the idea by now that wireless networking of any kind drains battery. It's true, so another way to save battery life is to turn off Bluetooth. Bluetooth networking is used to connect devices like keyboards, speakers, and headphones to the iPad. If you're not planning to connect to any of those, turn Bluetooth off. Do so via Settings -> General -> Bluetooth -> and moving the slider to OFF.

Keep your software up to date

Keep your software up to date

Apple recommends updating your Apps regularly because engineers look for new ways to optimize battery performance and when they find any ways, they pass these on via software updates.

Consume less content

Consume less content

This is a pretty basic tip but by not playing games and watching high-def Youtube videos the iPad will last much longer. Also if it is necessary to listen or watch media it is best for the content to be stored on your device rather than being streamed.

Reset Settings

Reset Settings

Use Reset All Settings to clear out any other bugs that could be negatively affecting battery life.

Settings - General - Reset all Settings.

Software Upgrade

Software Upgrade

Make sure you have the l;atest version of the operating system. If there is an update available, download and install it to the iPad. Settings, General,Software Update.

 

If all else fails, start over - Restore to factory defaults

If all else fails, start over - Restore to factory defaults

If all else fails, restoring the iPad to factory settings and starting from scratch is a good way to clear out problems causing bad battery life. In this case, don’t just restore from a backup, but set the iPad up from scratch. By starting new, users can hopefully ditch any corruption that is cutting battery life short.

1. Backup your iPad
Connect the iPad into iTunes to start the backup process. Select your device from the Devices tab in iTunes. If iTunes does not start a sync and backup automatically, right-click on the iPad and click on Back Up. You can restore from your backup once you have erased the iPad.

2. Restore iPad
After the backup is complete, click on Restore iPad. This will erase anything on the iPad and return it to the same state as when it left the Apple store.

2. Restore Backup
From here, you can Restore from a Backup.