To improve your smartphone’s carbon footprint, one of the most important things you can do is take care of its battery, recharging it less often and, as a consequence, prolonging its lifespan. Here are a few basics to help get you started.
Turn down screen brightness
The first trick for saving battery life is to reduce the brightness of your smartphone’s display. In fact, having the brightness too high is bad for your eyes, as well as your phone battery. Setting brightness to “automatic" can be a good idea, so that the display adapts to the ambient lighting.
Switch to dark mode
Switching to a dark mode, in your operating system and/or an application, has several advantages. First, it gives your eyes a break, as the screen emits less blue light. That’s especially true in the evening, just before you go to bed, when dark mode is especially recommended. Dark mode can also help keep your device running for longer by saving battery life.
Optimize app opening and closing
This involves making sure you close all the applications that you don’t often use and, on the other hand, leaving open your most frequently used apps, notably social media apps. In fact, constantly restarting them uses more energy.
Cut the connections
If there’s one thing that really guzzles power, it’s connecting over Bluetooth or WiFi. Remember to switch off this kind of connection, otherwise the device will be constantly searching for a new one nearby. When you do use them, remember to switch them off again once you’ve finished.
Switch off GPS when not needed
Using the GPS can also drain power. You’re therefore better off restricting the use of geolocation to a few specific applications (weather, maps, etc.). Don’t hesitate to go into the device settings to authorize access to GPS location for just a few applications.
Switch on power-saving mode
These days, almost all smartphones come with a power-saving mode. Available with iOS and Android, this kind of mode automatically restricts the background activity of certain applications (and blocks others entirely) while deactivating some visual effects.
Change the battery rather than the mobile
If the battery does give up the ghost, it’s better to replace it rather than to buy a new smartphone, especially if the device still works well and the operating system is up to date. Note that, unless you opted for an “ethical" smartphone, such as a Fairphone, you’re better off getting the battery changed by a professional. In any case, it’ll be much cheaper than shelling out for a new handset.