How to Extend Your Samsung Galaxy S2’s Battery Life

December 7, 2011

Samsung’s smashing success with the Galaxy S2 has reaped many joys and pleasures for many happy Android users. Despite the fact that it has won the hearts of many users, the Galaxy S2 still shares the same dilemma found in many Android devices–being prone to poor battery life.

With a massive 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus screen that is enough to satisfy ones craving for entertainment, it’s a monstrous device that consumes energy at very alarming speeds. Hopefully, there’s a remedy to get around the battery drain. With a few simple tips and tweaks, you should be able to feel a significant increase in your phone’s battery life.

Reduce screen brightness

The Galaxy S2’s Super AMOLED Plus screen is by far the largest battery consumer that could gobble down your battery life. To get more juice from your device, try disabling the automatic brightness option and manually set your phone’s display to the lowest brightness setting possible.

Less widgets means more battery

If you have 4 to 5 homescreens with tons of widgets piling on each page then your phone is bleeding with unnecessary battery consumption. You may not know it, but widgets like weather applications, news feeds, and social networking updates tend to consume more battery as these widgets use your phone’s data connection and auto sync capabilities every once in a while.  Keep only those important widgets that you need or you could try setting the widgets to sync only at a specific time and or on specific days.

Switch between 2G/3G connectivity

Your phone tends to use more power if it can’t find a decent signal to connect.  When traveling to locations where signal reception is poor, try to switch between 2G and 3G connections. That way you can save time and battery by switching to those signals.

Disable GPS / Bluetooth

Users normally don’t mind if their GPS or Bluetooth are turned on. Use these only when you want to locate places on the map or to send files to other users in the room. Turn off GPS and Bluetooth and use them only when they are needed.

Disable auto rotate / motion sensor

If you’re not playing games or need to tilt your phone, disable the motion sensor. Enable it only when you need it as it also tends to eat battery without your ever knowing it.

Underclock your phone’s CPU

The second culprit behind the Galaxy S2’s mammoth battery consumption can be attributed to the CPU. With the phone running twin 1.2 GHz processors, it could likely eat away more battery power than it can chew.  Rooted users of the device can install the SetCPU for Root Users app to underclock the phone’s processor down to the lowest speed possible when the device is not used.

Keep your background image simple

Live wallpapers are awesome to look at, but they also tend to consume more battery when your phone is in idle mode. As a suggestion, use only a plain background. Darker images like a black background can also help your device save battery, as Super AMOLED Plus is very efficient in rendering images that are not brightly colored.

Full cycle charge

Many users tend to charge their phone even it doesn’t need any charging. Constantly charging your phone at every chance you get can keep your phone fully charge all the time–but it does not help your phone’s overall battery health at all. Overcharging can degrade your phone’s battery.  So can doing quick charges and not full cycle charges. Only recharge your phone when it hits the red and let it completely fully charge to 100 percent without any interruptions. That way, you are keeping good battery calibrations on your device, as well as maintaining battery health.

Try these energy-saving tips on your Samsung Galaxy S2 and you will notice that your phone will have longer battery life.  Plus, by sticking to good practices (especially in relation to charge cycles), you can help prevent your phone’s battery from degrading more quickly than usual.

What other energy-saving tips do you know for the Galaxy S2?

Comments

  • http://twitter.com/kornys Kornelis Sietsma

    Please do not continue to propagate this myth about battery charging. Lithium-ion batteries do *not* benefit from draining the battery: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battery_charger#Prolonging_battery_life
    “These batteries last longest if the battery is frequently charged; fully discharging them will degrade their capacity relatively quickly”

    • http://twitter.com/NorbertVerse Norbert Verse

      Yeah you’re right!! I would recommend looking into this post for instance http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1391186

    • Shaun

      Love how you reference wikipedia as your source of truth, because if everyone thinks its right, then it must be right!!

      • mdouglas

        If you were truly intelligent, instead of trying to merely appear to be so, you would see that his Wikipedia link link referenced a source and that source was Battery University, which I think knows a lot more about the subject than you do.

    • Joeborg

      the irony of this comment is referencing Wikipedia at the end, an open source, to back your statement :) However you are correct

    • Mike

      If its on Wikipedia it must be true

  • AppleFUD

    Great article. . . something every noob to Android should read.

    • SatjeetSingh

      Juice Defender is the free application & it has increased my battery life by 1.5 times (Satjeet)

      • Cullmeister

        so they say on the app

  • Jakub Vokaty

    you find that all over the web and it doesn’t matter if it’s SGS 2 or any other phone still the same….

  • Snbkumar

    This is not onlyfor SG S2. Its for all phones :)

  • R2DROID2

    Is it true that that i can buy a better battery for my fruit-phone killing beast of a phone? Anyone?

  • Lai Linda

    display Power Saving widget, turn on WiFi, GPS, Bluetooth when you need it. Download free “Data Enabler Widget”; simplest widget ever; enable data only when you need with a tap. I have Galaxy S2, the battery life improve from 1 day to 2.5 days. I also set the brightness to minimum and totally black homescreen wallpaper.

  • MikeyLikey

    Referencing from Wiki??? Good choice for a source…

  • Guest

    @Kornelis

    Thank you! After reading that section of the article I was about to post the same thing. It’s a pet peeve of mine that people still believe this, and state it as fact. Someone really needs to do a PSA on the matter

  • Jakub Vokaty

    If you really want to have longer battery life. It feels much better in the hand little bit heavier but still acceptable. Buy the official extended battery kit from samsung ;) it prolongs the battery about 25-30% have it experienced myself and people on xda tested it as well ^^

    • LinaAth

      I went to the Samsung repair centre and asked about the extended battery answer was told that they don’t make them. so who do you believe?

      • RJP

        Yes they do. I have one complete with larger back to accomodate it, from Samsung

  • Harrywong
  • http://twitter.com/NorbertVerse Norbert Verse

    :) I would add – Buy an “Mugen extended battery”
    http://www.mugen-power-batteries.com/samsung/samsung-galaxy-s-ii-i9100.html

  • Geethakrishnan

    In s2 settings pane where u can adjjst the brightness click on more button. It has battery saving tips.

    Sidebar- WHATS THE POINT IN HAVING S2 IF U DISABLE ALL WIDGETS, NO ANIME WALL PAPER, NO BT, NO WIFI, NO DATA, NO BRIGHT SCREEN…. I CAN GO BK TO APPLE

    • http://www.facebook.com/prodrigue1015 Paul Rodrigue

      Then go U Apple HO

      • Paul_Rodrigue

        Go and boil your goolies

    • JB

      I’m returning my S2 and going back to a Nokia N900. Found a new one on ebay. I can leave everything on, WIFI, Bluetooth, GPS, widgets, etc. and I still get decent battery life. My S2? With everything I use regularly turned off I still could not get 6 hours of use. Totally useless to me.

    • Praveen

      Haha, well said :)

  • Anonymous

    I’ve done all of the above and it has been of negligible value

    • Geoffreylpowell

      Agree 2 Galaxy S2’s HD LTE’s in 2 days, both get 8 – 9 hours of battery life with no widgets, minimal bluetooth & wi-fi. What’s so great about a super-amoled screen if you have no power from the battery.

  • JY

    If you are going to use your phone the way it was intended to be used, then you are obviously going to consume a lot of battery, which is understandable. The main issue I used to have was the amount of battery that was being used while the phone was idle.

    I have not rooted my phone and am currently running 2.3.5. with Go Launcher Ex and Go Locker. I have 2 home screens. One with 2 weather widgets, a battery widget and a switch/toggle widget for some function shortcuts, and a world clock widget. The other home screen just contains shortcuts to the apps I regularly use.

    I used to to have a task killer but found that it did more harm than good. I’ve turned most of the auto-sync functions off because I do not see the urgency it constantly being notified of emails and Facebook and Twitter notifications. I can check manually every time I go into the app.

    I also found that my phone constantly looking for a decent 3G signal would drain a lot of battery so when not in use I would leave it in 2G mode, and switch to 3G if I wanted to access data faster. I also found that wi-fi drains a lot of battery and have read that there might be a bug with the wifi and wifi sharing. I still use wifi since the connection and data transfers are faster but I make sure I turn it off when not in use.

    I now get decent battery life when the phone is idle. My phone has been running for just over 14.5 hours and showing 78% left. The only apps I’ve run are Facebook, Twitter, a few games and a 20 minute Viber call.

    If I start doing other things such as surf the internet, watch YouTube videos and listen to music, then this will obviously consume more battery, but its supposed to.

    It all comes down to personal preference. If you’re a heavy user, then you should expect to have to charge your phone on a more regular basis.

    • http://twitter.com/Cdn_Tam Tam A.

      I will try some of these but my phone can not sit on my desk for 8 hours without being almost dead. God forbid I want to use it for Twitter or Facebook. I’ve tried app killers, useless as the minute I kill something it seems to be back up and working within 5 seconds. I don’t watch videos or listen to music, I don’t use it for phone calls, or much texting. I use it to access the internet as a rule. It’s frustrating that I can’t even go 8 hours without it being dead. Maybe switching to 2G will work, but I leave it plugged in most of the time because if I wait until it’s at 20% and I have to leave the house, well it’s not much use to have a “portable” cell phone that is constantly dead in your purse. My daughter got the Razr and it has MUCH better battery life than mine. And she uses it a lot more than I do.

      • Mark_CZ

        I just charged my GSII this afternoon having not been charged since Friday night (almost four days). I am a light user of the phone and mainly use it for internet, GPS and the camera. I use Juice Defender Ultimate – it disables all data which really saves the battery, then to use the internet, I simply pull down the notification bar and single tap on the juice defender notification and data is enabled. It is just as easy to disable data. Alternatively, you could get a widget which turns your data on/off but this wont save your battery as much as juice defender also saves battery using other methods! Also, you can turn off the auto-rotate feature as it apparently use a fair bit of the battery even when not being used.

  • http://bgoog.com/ Black Google

    Black backgrounds definitely help a lot! You set your homepage to Black Google Mobile (http://bGoog.com) to search the web and images in black too…

  • mmlcapri

    if we do all that what is the point to have powerful phone like the galaxy s2….the problem they put such a technology but they are far beyond with the battery……………

  • Anonymous

    Muppets who badly research their articles piss me off. Actually learn how a battery works as opposed to perpetuating the myths that others spoon feed onto forums like lemmings to a clifftop. How about starting your research on a website other than wiki”we print anything”pedia.

    • mdouglas

      You’re correct, but don’t blame it on Wikipedia. Wikipedia is what it is and quality of information varies. It’s up to the researcher to verify his or her information using more than a single source.

      • Gegè

        My thoughts exactly. I can’t stand people who treat wikipedia as if it were some kind of academic pariah.

  • simply me

    why during charging the samsung galaxy s2 it’s heat..?

  • simply me

    can cctv being viewd by this phone? if yes how could i gets the phone setting?

  • Guest

    battery comments are wrong! keep charged! read post below Sietsma!

  • Robeydp

    Hi, Where can I find this portion : Underclock your phone’s CPU : on my Samsung Galaxy S2? so that I could reduce the CPU when not in use. BTW my phone is not rooted or whatever that means.

  • Ricky

    So I could make up my mind between the galaxy s2 and the iphone 4s. Decided to go with my gut and go android scene as i already have an ipad. I love the Galaxy its an amazing phone, but it has a ridiculous battery life. It has all this amazing features but some of them just dont work. I dont want to have to have to turn off everything that is the reason why I bought it just to be able to make the battery last, otherwise I could have bought myself a cheap android phone. Also the talk assist just doesnt seem to work properly with my voice.(HELP!) Also when my navigation is on i get this other voice reading codes to me during my directions. PLEASE HELP GUYS. The last thing I wanna do is go and get myself an IPHONE.

    • Chance113

      i use lithium batteries all day . the battery life is fine . when i have longer and heavier jobs i bought a longer amp hour battery that last twice a s long . like a car or truck,”if you can’t afford the gas ” they make a 3500 amp hour battery for 30.00 dollars . i would research before you buy. call an actual battery shop and determine if it suits your needs. good luck

  • Lawrence

    It’s common knowledge that Lithium-ion batteries do not need to be discharged fully. Every manufacturer of them tells you this. Have some of you been living under a rock for the past 10yrs????

  • mrswhg

    My phone is one month old. It just started shutting down by it’s self and now it gets hot. Any ideas? Yes I’m going to call T-Mobile.

  • Johnpeterwright2003

    Battery charge is irrelevent on a lithium ion battery, tge cells degrade due to useage and are not affected by charging,higher consuming devices degrade batteries faster, charging only affects older nickel batteries

  • Philopek

    about charging batteries there is my practical experience over 30 years of using mobile phones and all the theories spread accross the net. i know may people who only charge their phone and often their laptops ect. when the battery empty or almost that. i myself keep all my devices with lion accus permanently on the wall except when i need them on battery. and gess what, have about 10 mobile phones, 5 of them more than 4 or 5 years old, all with batteries almost or like now. this is due to the fact that batteries have a certain number of cycles until they detoriate. while the numbrr of cycles has risen up to around 1000 cylces in modern accus, stell 1000 is not 2000. thus if you drain your battery each time before you put it back to the wall you face two major disadvantages which outperform all other theoretical advantiges.

    a) if you need the battery really it is almost never full but often half or less. what does a 5% higher potential help you if you don’t start at 100% ?

    b) after 3 years, approximately 1000 days = cycles ( average smartphone one charge per day ) you will have a battery that you can see detoriate amost on a daily basis, while the alwys charged accu which had in the first year maybe 5-10% less capacitiy is still and will be for long on it’s 90 to 95% of battery power which are always fully availabe when you need them, remember (a)

    so whowever tells the tale about full cycling batteries reads smartphones manufacturers manuals very well but does not think it to the end. further we should never forget that they are trying to sell us a smuch as they can, be it new batteries or new phones when the abo price for a phone is lower than the price of a cash paid new battery pack :-)

  • Efernandez

    Why then deceive customers with so much crap when in the end it is going to suck up so much battery juice?? It just does not make sense at all!

  • Hankeljt

    the charging units need be bumped up to a slightly higher output to keep up with charging the battery and allow the use of the phone at the same time. i noticed that i can use the phone while plugged in and during a movie or video feed the battery either drains faster then being charged or remains the same.

  • Hankeljt

    my solution is as such, i bought a battery docking charger it comes with two batteries. when i drain one i replace it with a charged one that way i drain and recharge completely and because of the external charge the batteries have a chance to cool as well after a charge which helps with the battery life. keeping a battery constantly charging or over charging keeps the battery warm which degrades the cell everytime it over charges or continuely keeping it charging allowing the battery to stay warm.

  • Mark

    Download Juice Defender or something similar. I use the extreme version and it’s doubled my battery life. With low usage I can get 4 days use, from moderate usage I get 2-3 days use.

  • paul

    Just thought I’d say that the last thing about partial recharges being harmful is untrue. While storing the battery at full charge is damaging, only using a small amount of the battery capacity reduces stress and increases the life span of the battery. Look here for better info http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/how_to_prolong_lithium_based_batteries

  • Scott Mcmartin

    As soon as the new jelly bean went in that is when it all went down hill the battery keeps going dead

  • Nazrul Biswas

    hello i hv a extended seam with the fax number but i cant use it but i was able to use in nokia communicator. could u pls help how can i use the fax service in galaxy s II. my mail address monotexint@dhaka.net
    cell: +8801711531120

  • Nicholas

    useless, i already did them all and also rooted and underclocked before i read this, the battery is still dying quick.