How I doubled the battery life of my Samsung Galaxy smartphone

This article may contain personal views and opinion from the author.
How I doubled the battery life of my Samsung Galaxy smartphone
I got my first cell phone back in 2002 – an Alcatel OneTouch 511. It was far from a perfect handset – the ringtones were too quiet and the D-pad was awfully flimsy – but eventually, I learned to live with its flaws. In fact, there was a number of things I absolutely loved about my 511, including its compact size, the fun pre-loaded games, and, definitely not least, the outstanding battery life. The thing lasted about five to six days between charges, and I wasn't even trying to preserve its battery juice.

Today, some 12 years later, I'm using a Samsung Galaxy K Zoom as my daily driver, and it is not too hard to guess that I picked it because of the camera. That happened three months ago, as of this writing. Several days after getting the phone, I had already accustomed to its gargantuan proportions. I had learned to live with the frequent lags as well. But the K Zoom's dreadful battery life really bothered me – a full battery in the morning was usually in the red by the evening, and how lightly or heavily I was using the handset didn't seem to make much of a difference. That was something I wasn't willing to accept.

I was confident that I could get better mileage out of the K Zoom with a little tinkering – by disabling features I did not need, by tweaking the screen's brightness, by enabling the built-in battery saver mode, for example. But at the same time, I was not planning on turning my smartphone into a dumb phone with a touchscreen. I wanted to get my mail instantly, to have my photos and files automatically uploaded to the cloud, and to never be without internet access, be it over Wi-Fi or cellular. Also, I wasn't keen on the idea of rooting the handset for the sake of disabling system apps and I was definitely not going to install any task killers or battery "optimizers" on it.

Once I had this rough plan in mind, I took the following steps to increase my battery life. Note that the tips provided below do not apply solely to the K Zoom. In fact, they are either universal or applicable to a number of other phones, regardless of their make and model, so feel free to try them out on your device if you're not happy with its longevity.


You're eager to learn whether or not any of that had a positive effect, aren't you? Well, the chart to the right sums it all up. After applying the tweaks I just described, my phone's battery life increased drastically, and now, I can comfortably use it for a couple of days before reaching for a charger. Yes, I know that a two-day battery life is anything but mind-blowing, but it is good enough for my needs.

Better yet, I did not have to change any of my usage habits to get some decent mileage out of the Galaxy K Zoom. I still go on Facebook, Twitter, 9GAG and Reddit every once in a while, I still take photos and tinker with the phone's camera whenever I feel like it, I read my news feed and email, use Spotify, Skype, WhatsApp, Viber, Dropbox, Facebook Messenger and Google's services as much as I want. The only inconvenience caused by my tune-up is having to turn my GPS and location services on whenever I need to get directions, but in all honesty, I think the trade-off is worth it. 

Ultimately, I am now content with my phone's battery life, and I don't feel like I've crippled it in any way to get to this point. I can rest assured that when I unplug my phone in the morning, it will last me through the evening and beyond even if I use it extensively. And I think I've clearly shown that as far as battery life goes, how a phone is configured can be as important as how it is used. 

Related phones

Galaxy K zoom
  • Display 4.8" 720 x 1280 pixels
  • Camera 20.7 MP / 2 MP front
  • Processor Samsung Exynos 5 Hexa, Hexa-core, 1700 MHz
  • Storage 8 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2430 mAh(14h 3G talk time)

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27 Comments

1. RuiBacelar

Posts: 153; Member since: Feb 25, 2014

Or you can simply buy a Xperia Z2 or Z3 and enjoy 2 days with heavy use (with stamina mode and greenify, that is)

3. tiara6918

Posts: 2263; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

But the problem is, it takes too long for the phone to charge

7. EcoCare

Posts: 444; Member since: Jul 30, 2014

Since most people charge their phones overnight, I think it's safe to dismiss this concern.

8. buccob

Posts: 2975; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

This is not true... It takes almost the same time to charge up to ~ the same battery level that, say a Samsung, would give... Example: Samsung Galaxy S5 | Battery Test = 7h38m | Charging 0-100% = 122 Sony Xperia Z3 | Battery Test = 9h29m | Charging 0-100% = 235 Most Li-Ion batteries charge up to 80% in half the time... so Z3 Charging Time from 0-80% = 117... and 80% of 9.5h = 7h36m There you go.. Same charging time for the same battery life, the difference is that you can charge the Z3 up to 100% and have 2 more hours of PhoneArena's usage test...

19. doejon

Posts: 411; Member since: Jul 31, 2012

lol then compare it with the note 4 and not with s5 and its not only about the battery.. in this case its the cpu

29. Sealblaighter

Posts: 430; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

How much does it take to fully charge a Z3?

5. hassoups

Posts: 473; Member since: Jun 06, 2013

but he wants a phone with a good camera...

6. Wiencon

Posts: 2278; Member since: Aug 06, 2014

I have Z3 C and I expected better battery, but if it's on top in this category I feel bad for people using other phones. It gets me through 3 days but I use it only for SMS/calling and a little web surfing. While doing it I can just see how battery loses 1% every 3 minutes.

10. jaytai0106

Posts: 1888; Member since: Mar 30, 2011

Damn it! You beat me to it :P I have the Z2 and I'm loving it. Samsung doesn't have better camera sensor, but better software to process the photo. Z series' cameras are really good, but Sony keeps the software light and keep the photo very plain and simple. If you want a Samsung smartphone and good battery life, just get a Note 3/4 then you'll have good battery life. Beside, with replaceable battery, why anyone even complaint about Samsung phone's battery life. It's like someone driving a Prius complains about gas mileage while people who drive electric cars are like we have to charge this every night.

13. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

You do realize Greenify basically turns Android multitasking into iOS multitasking by hibernating background apps. It 100% does increase battery life however. Goes to show that iOS manages multiple apps better. Pretty hilarious oversight. Don't tell the other fanboys the truth.

18. SayMobile

Posts: 157; Member since: Jan 29, 2014

But the problem is that they are not a Galaxy

23. jaytai0106

Posts: 1888; Member since: Mar 30, 2011

That's not the problem, but the solution :P but both line of phones are great product.

26. GalaxyS5

Posts: 430; Member since: Aug 05, 2014

my friend has a Z2 and it's not that better in battery life than my phone .. I don't have anything against Sony.. I love Sony but phones nowadays are still terrible in battery life .. more or less is still a question of a few hours ..

2. DogeShibe

Posts: 1121; Member since: Jan 10, 2014

9GAG - s**t tier Others - Meh tier Reddit - Hero tier Everyone knows the god tier.

28. osbert

Posts: 125; Member since: Jul 02, 2014

reddit is absolute trash

4. buccob

Posts: 2975; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

Well, my usage constantly has "Screen" as the biggest battery drainer by far. So anyone with 2 days battery and "Cell Standby" as their biggest battery drainer is not a heavy user in my book. I really want a Z3C... please Sony address the glass issues in future batches.

9. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Sammy and Sony phones are giving good battery backups though recently the charging time is less for Samsung phones.

11. LeBoeuf

Posts: 6; Member since: Nov 17, 2014

I was able to make my iPhone last a week by turning off the power.

12. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

Ive never had issues getting all day battery life. 5-6 hours on screen easily with my 5S (Web surfing, texting, calling) Step 1: Turn off all notifications that aren't ESSENTIAL. This is to keep your screen from lighting up all day about stuff you don't care about. Step 2: Keep screen brightness under 50%. Android Only: CLOSE APPS YOU ARENT USING. BONUS: If you have an AMOLED screen, use pure black or "no background", and if you use custom roms, look for one with a "dark" option or mode. I have no problems getting 5-6 hours out of an old HTC One S with this set up. This applies to all Galaxy S/Note phones.

14. antmiu2

Posts: 550; Member since: Jun 19, 2011

wanto double the batter life on a galaxy phone? get a spare battery.. ba dum tss

15. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

First turn off your data traffic and stop facebooking. how simple is that? doesn't take journalist expert to answer that question. My phone can last 70 percent end of the day.

16. sunday

Posts: 39; Member since: Aug 15, 2014

nobody should should complain samsung battery bc they maDe it easy for you to replace a dead battery, just get a spare battery

17. mrblah

Posts: 577; Member since: Jan 22, 2013

Buy a bigger battery, and turn your crap back on. derp

20. DALVEORTS

Posts: 8; Member since: Sep 09, 2014

just remember that, if you turn location off, you cant use tinder ;)

21. frustyak

Posts: 248; Member since: Mar 08, 2010

If I were a betting man (and I'm not) I would wager that the Google Play Movies was the primary culprit in this instance - all those wakelocks can add up. Back when I had my HTC One X, it drained pretty quick too, until I discovered that turning off LTE drastically reduced my battery drain. Now I leave off LTE until I want or need it.

22. greyhulk

Posts: 184; Member since: Jun 30, 2010

Oh good. Another battery tips article that can basically be summarized as "Turn everything off". Might as well go back to a dumb phone.

27. gigaraga

Posts: 1454; Member since: Mar 29, 2013

Well, shouldn't this be common sense by now? Lowering screen brightness, sync, apps, radios, the works....

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