The Complete Guide to Improving Battery Life in iOS 7 (And Previous Versions)

The Complete Guide to Improving Battery Life in iOS 7 (And Previous Versions)

Apple’s iOS devices typically have very good battery life, especially compared to competing products. But sometimes people experience problems, like the battery drain issues in iOS 7, or just want to squeeze every last bit of life from their batteries. This guide provides a number of practical tips to help you make the most of your battery life.

Part 1: iOS 7-Specific Tips and Tricks

If your battery life issues are specifically related to iOS 7, there are a few critical steps you might try to improve your battery life usage, which are successful to a varying degree based on the vast number of reports we have heard from users in our daily walkabout, as well as from around the internet. With any luck, a few of these will work for you.

  • Quit And/Or Disable Background Apps

With iOS 7, Apple now allows more apps than ever to continue running tasks in the background. Manually closing background apps has been less useful in previous versions of iOS – but it can be crucial in iOS 7! To do this, just double-tap your home button, and swipe up on each running app to force it to close.

You can also manually disable Background App Refresh by opening Settings, and selecting the Background App Refresh option from the General settings page, and turning the Background App Refresh toggle to Off.

  • Reset Your Settings

One of the things that I have found significantly helped my battery life in iOS 7 was to reset all of my settings and re-enable them one-by-one. To do this, just enter the Settings app, select the General pane, then navigate to the Reset option at the bottom. Select Reset all Settings. Now, enter your device PIN and Apple ID password, and your device’s settings will reset. Note: This will NOT delete ANY of your apps and content – but you’ll have to re-enter settings like WiFi passwords, re-enable Siri, and so forth.

  • Start Fresh

When moving to a major new iOS version – such as the upgrade from iOS 6.1.3 or 6.1.4 to iOS 7, starting fresh may be your best option. This will force you to re-install all your apps, and will wipe out y our app data, and should probably be your last resort – but on the bright side, starting over from scratch might be just what you need to re-discover and make the most of your iOS device all over again!

Part 2: Top 10 Tips and Tricks to Reduce Battery Usage


Simply power-cycling your device can have a huge impact. This should be your first step in troubleshooting.

  • Lower the Screen Brightness

Not only can reducing the brightness of your screen be much easier on the eyes, it can also help significantly increase your battery life, as the display uses more power than almost any other part of your device. You can adjust the brightness by double-tapping the home button and swiping to the left.

  • Disable Bluetooth, LTE, and/or Personal Hotspot

If you aren’t actively using a Bluetooth headset or other Bluetooth device, turn off Bluetooth. When Bluetooth is enabled, it is constantly looking for devices to connect to, which drains precious battery life. Tu turn off Bluetooth, go into Settings, then tap General > Bluetooth, and flip the toggle switch to the off position.

It’s no secret that ultra-fast LTE mobile data uses a lot more battery power than traditional 3G or 4G data – and fortunately, there’s a simply way to disable LTE in favor of somewhat slower data to save battery life. Simple launch Settings, then navigate to General > Network, and flip the “Enable LTE” switch to the off position.

Likewise, many people with their carrier’s WiFi hotspot feature may find that their iPhone’s WiFi network is enabled, despite the fact that they may not be using it at any given moment. Disabling the “personal hotspot” can greatly improve your battery life – just open Settings, tap the “personal hotspot” pane, and turn the toggle to the off position.

  • Turn Off or Reduce Notifications

Notifications can be important. But many apps use notifications when the really aren’t necessary – games can be really bad about this. Turning off notifications for apps (find this in Settings > Notifications) that you don’t use them with can help you save some battery life, as well as prevent apps from annoying you unnecessarily.

  • Use Airplane Mode

 This applies mainly to the iPod touch and the iPad. When you aren’t doing something that needs internet access, setting your device on airplane mode can save battery life by preventing your device from searching for wireless signals. Airplane mode can be enabled by entering Settings, and tapping on Airplane Mode.

  • Disable Location Services

Many apps, including Apple’s standard camera app, can retrieve location information while you are using your device. Determining your location takes battery power, so if you don’t need your apps to have access to this data, you can turn location services off. You can also disable location services for each app you have installed by entering Settings, and tapping on Location Services.

  • Change The Frequency of Receiving Mail

Depending on which email service or services you use, different default settings can apply to your mail. Some services, such as iCloud, use push, which delivers messages to your phone the instant they are received in your inbox. Other services, such as Gmail, are set to retrieve email messages less often.

By setting your email preference to “fetch,” which only downloads messages when you enter, can save a lot of battery life by preventing Mail from constantly connecting to the internet or downloading mail. This is done through the Mail, Contacts, Calendars pane in Settings (Settings > Mail > Fetch New Data.)

  • Disable Diagnostic & Usage Reports

Sending out usage and diagnostic reports can help Apple to improve iOS and make the user experience better. However, this also uses data, and causes some background activity. So to get the very best out of your battery, disabling this might be a good option. You can find this in Settings > General > About > Diagnostic & Usage > Don’t Send.

  • Turn of Siri’s “Raise to Speak” feature.

Raise to Speak constantly checks for motion and facial proximity to activate Siri when you life your iPhone to your ear. These things naturally waste battery power you could use for other things.


Yes yes, we know the iPhone is a great tool, and fun to use, and that you might go into withdrawals if you are separated from it for any amount of time – but maybe your life would be just the faintest bit more interesting (and your battery life a bit longer) if you learned to put your device down every now and then, and stopped to smell the roses!

It’s hard, I know. But worth it? Probably.

We hope this will help you squeeze a bit more valuable use time out of your iOS devices! Know of any tips that we missed? Let us know!

For more helpful tips, check out our full collection of tutorials by visiting our How-To category!