October 17, 2011

Fix iOS 5 Battery Consumption Issues

Users who have upgraded to iOS 5 recently may be seeing their batteries get consumed a lot faster than before. Follow these steps to fix iOS 5 battery consumption issues.

If you are among the 21 million users who have upgraded their iOS 4 device (iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPad ) to iOS 5 in the last few days, you may also be among the ones seeing the phone battery drain much faster with iOS 5. For example, for some iPhone 4 users, the battery lasts for only 4 hours even with no use.

There can be many reasons for excessive battery consumption in iOS 5 e.g. programs that are running constantly, push notifications, location services consuming the battery, etc. Try each of these steps one-by-one to identify the source(s) of excessive battery consumption and fix it.

iOS Device Constantly Connecting to Email Server
If you use push to fetch email + you restored the email settings in iOS 5 from a backup made in iOS 4, your email program may have gotten stuck. It will try to connect to the email servers constantly, consuming the device’s (iPhone, iPad) battery in the process.

  1. Delete old email accounts on the device
    Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars

  2. Reboot the device

  3. Setup the email accounts again on the device
    Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars
(Be careful with this step, as deleting an email account will also delete the associated emails stored on the device. If all your emails are stored on your email server, they should be available there)

When you disable a feature, check the battery state after 30 min or so to see if disabling reduced the battery consumption, otherwise remember to enable that feature.

iOS 5 Push Notifications Consuming Battery
Notifications run in the background and consume power.

Turn off notifications for each app (where it is enabled), or turn it off globally to see if this reduces the battery consumption.

iOS 5 Location Services Consuming Battery
Location Services use the phone GPS which consumes a lot of power (relative to other features).

Turn off Location Services globally on the phone or for each app (where it is enabled) to see if this reduces the battery consumption e.g. Find My Friends app uses location services.

iCloud Backup Consuming Battery
The backup will transfer data to iCloud servers and consume battery in the process. The first iCloud backup may be long but subsequent ones should be short data transfers and should not use up a lot of the battery.

Turn off iCloud backup to see if this reduces battery consumption.

Also be sure to check these features
Turn off Blue Tooth
Turn off diagnostics settings > general > about > diagnostics and usage > don’t send
Turn off Personal Hotspot
Turn off WiFi
Turn down screen brightness to 50% (in case it was set to 100%)