How to boost your iPhone X battery life


In a rare move, Apple recently admitted it was intentionally slowing down older iPhones after getting a flurrry of complaints. The firm even posted an open apology and is offering cheap iPhone battery replacements to anyone affected until the end of the year. 

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 Of course, it wasn’t on par with the fiasco Samsung faced when batteries in the Galaxy Note 7 began exploding in 2017, but it goes to show how battery technology is far from perfect, and how even the tech giants are struggling when it comes to meeting the power demands of its customers.

With this in mind, we’re going to be running a series of pieces on how to boost the battery life of specific handsets, to add to our collection of stories on how to boost battery life generally across smartphones and laptops. First up, how to boost your iPhone X’s battery life. 

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The iPhone X – pronounced iPhone “ten” – is the expensive flagship handset Apple developed to mark the tenth anniversary of the original iPhone. It’s been on sale since the Autumn so, hopefully, the battery is still holding its charge well. That said, if you’ve noticed a drop or simply want to limit how much degradation it experiences, read on. 

In summary: 

  1. Check your individual battery usage
  2. Enable Low Power Mode
  3. Disable Raise to Wake
  4. Stop apps refreshing in the background
  5. Manage your screen’s brightness levels

1. Check your individual battery usage

Before we dive into more general tips about boosting your iPhone X battery life, it’s worth checking which apps or services are the worst culprits when it comes to your individual battery usage.

Go to Settings | Battery and scroll down to the Battery Usage list. Here, you’ll see which apps have used the most battery life over the past 24 hours, and during the past seven days.

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Below the app’s name, you’ll see exactly how it was using your battery, such as via “background activity” or “audio”. If there is an app that’s using a disproportionate amount of power, you can try using the app less or uninstalling it if it’s no longer needed. 

2. Enable Low Power Mode

Without doubt, the best way to save power on your iPhone X is to enable iOS’ built-in Low Power Mode. It’s not unique to the iPhone X either, having been available since 2016. It offers a catch-all, quick solution to a draining battery and automatically disables background app refresh, auto downloads and resets the lighting and animation options to maximise battery life. Be warned though, you won’t get all your usual app notifications if you enable Low Power Mode. 

To enable, go to Settings | Battery and toggle Low Power Mode to “on”. The battery icon in the top right-hand corner will go from green to yellow to show it’s been enabled.

In iOS 11, you can additionally add the Low Power Mode controls to the Control Centre. Go to Settings | Control Center | Customise controls. Press the green “plus” button next to Low Power Mode in the list at the bottom of the screen and it will be added to the selected controls at the top. 

3. Disable Raise To Wake

A subtle, yet incredibly useful, feature that came to the iPhone in iOS 10 was the Raise to Wake tool. When enabled, each time you pick up your phone or orientate the screen towards you, the screen registers the movement and “wakes the screen” up. This means you can glance at your phone without pressing the power button on the side, or pressing the home button. The latter, in particular, can inadvertently unlock the device if you’re using Touch ID, which can be a pain. 

The benefits you get from this feature, though, can be undone by the amount of battery life you eat into by constantly making the screen light up. To conserve an, albeit small, amount of power, disable this feature by going to Settings | Raise to Wake and move the switch to the “off” position.

4. Stop apps refreshing in the background

Although you can automatically disable the Background App Refresh feature in Low Power Mode, you can also manually disable it while preserving other features. It pings the servers of your relevant apps to pull in your latest emails, see your new Facebook Likes, retweets, and more.

Regularly pinging these servers uses up battery because it means apps are running on your phone’s power (and data connection) even if the phone isn’t being used. 

To disable Background App Refresh on your iPhone X go to Settings | General | Background App Refresh | Background App Refresh and toggle the slider to the “off” position. You can additionally disable Background App Refresh for individual apps. 

5. Manage your screen’s brightness levels

Simply tweaking how bright your iPhone X screen is can work wonders for your battery life. The extra light used to illuminate your screen requires a fair amount of energy which drains your battery.

As a rule, the lighter it is outside, the more light you’ll need on the screen. For example, when lying in bed at night you can have the screen on minimum brightness and still see everything clearly. While in bright sunshine, you’ll need to turn the brightness levels to maximise to counteract the amount of light coming from the sun.

You can mange your screen’s brightness levels manually by swiping up from the bottom of the screen and adjusting the brightness slider (the one shown with a sunshine icon). Alternatively, go to Settings | General | Accessibility | Display Accommodations and toggle the Auto-Brightness switch to “on”. With this enabled, your iPhone X will adjust the display to suit the amount of ambient light hitting its sensors. 

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