First, control the brightness. Your iPhone likely came from the store with its screen brightness around 50 percent, which is higher than you’ll need in most situations. The brighter your screen, the shorter your battery life. You can adjust this by going to “Settings” and then “Brightness,” where you can slide the brightness to a lower level or select the Auto-Brightness feature, which will lower or raise the screen’s image based on room conditions. This way, you’ll be able to see the screen if you need to make a call outside or in your car, but when you’re inside around lower lighting, the screen will dim itself.
Next, you should disable push notifications. This is done by selecting “Settings” and then “Notifications,” then turning them off. You’ll also want to do the same for your email accounts. Under “Settings,” select “Mail, Contacts, Calendars,” then enter the “Fetch New Data” menu, turn off push notifications, and select “Manually” under the fetch options. Push notifications require your phone to constantly work to download more emails and information when the applications aren’t in use, which is a huge power drain. You won’t lose any time by merely opening up the email application and letting new messages appear, and you’ll extend your battery life by a huge amount.
The latest iPhone OS, iOS, lets you keep programs running in the background to enable multitasking. This is less helpful than you’d think, especially in terms of smart power usage. Running all those programs when you aren’t using them sucks your battery dry that much faster. To turn these programs off when they’re not in use, double-click the Home button, then hold down an icon until they all start to wiggle around. You’ll see they each have a minus sign in a red circle in the upper-left corner. Tapping this will shut those programs down. Get used to doing this regularly if you want to extend your iPhone’s battery life. It’s a minor inconvenience, true, but it’s worth it for the energy you’re saving.
(TechPatio editor’s note: There are different opinions about this one. It seems the double-click menu doesn’t show running apps, but “recently used” apps. The only thing running in the background are possibly whatever services the apps might need to do a task. Such services will likely be shut down as well if you close the wiggling apps on “minus sign in red circle”-icon).
A big part of extending your battery life is also just being smart about how you use the phone. If you want to idly browse for new apps, do it via iTunes on your computer. When you end a call or finish checking your mail, lock your phone so it goes to sleep. If you’re out in the middle of nowhere, switch the phone to Airplane Mode so it’ll stop draining the battery to look for cell towers. When an app asks to use your location, say no unless it’s something that needs your location to function (like Maps or a restaurant finder). The iPhone is a fantastic tool, but like any tool, it needs to be used properly to work well and live a long, healthy life.