Archive for February, 2012


Maximize or boost android battery life

Maximize or boost android battery life

Instructions:

 

1.  Use android’s built in battery usage screen: Check whats exactly eating up your android phone’s battery the most. Go to Settings > About Phone > Battery Use. From this screen you can understand what to turn off in your phone settings to save battery.

 

2. Adjust the brightness: Big bright screens are great to look at but they eat up the maximum amount of your android’s battery. To adjust the brightness go to Settings > Display > Brightness. Either you can select the auto brightness option if available or adjust it manually.

 

 

3. Disable Wi-Fi: We know browsing on wifi is much faster than browsing on mobile data plan. Make sure you turn off the wifi when you aren’t using it because if the wifi is on your phone will keep on scanning for available networks. Go to Settings > Wireless and network settings> Wifi settings > Turn Off Wifi. (or simply turn off the wifi from the notification area)

 

 

4. Disable Bluetooth: Disable Bluetooth whenever you are not using it. It saves a lot of battery as well as keeps your smartphone save too. Go to Settings > Wireless and network settings>Bluetooth settings> Turn of Bluetooth. (or simply turn off the Bluetooth from the notification area)

 

5. Disable GPS: Disable GPS and Latitude when you are not using it. GPS is a very powerful service but it drains the battery pretty fast. Use GPS only when you need it. Go to Settings> Location and Security Settings> Remove check from “Use GPS Satellites”. (or simply turn off the GPS from the notification area)

 

Note: You can use the “Power Widget” to easily toggle GPS, Bluetooth, Wifi and Screen Brightness.
 

6. Disable automatic sync: Many applications like Gmail, facebook, twitter and other email apps eat up a lot of battery due to automatic sync features. Background data is also required to get the e-mails and updates at regular intervals. The best settings you can make is to keep the background data on and automatic sync feature turned off. Go to Settings> Accounts and Sync> Remove check mark from “Auto-sync”.

 

 

7. Disable or remove the apps that you don’t use:  There are many apps which we have installed and we never use them. Make sure you remove such apps because many of those apps keep running at the background. This will help you in freeing up internal phone memory as well as save battery.

 

8. Disable home screen widgets and live wallpaper:  Home screen widgets always make the apps running at the background. So make sure you keep only those widgets that you generally use. Live wallpaper is sure an eye candy and makes your smartphone home screen look beautiful, but it makes the battery backup half of what you would normally get if you use an image as wallpaper. So don’t use live wallpaper and use minimum widgets.
 

9. Use a good task killer: I would suggest you to use the inbuilt Task Killer app of your android smartphone because it has been designed according to your phone. If you want you can also grab a good task killer from android market and make sure you use it according to the instructions given. If used properly task killers can do wonders for your smartphone.

 

10. Use battery saving apps: There are many applications that aim to improve your battery performance. The majority of these restrict internet use and can be customized according to your needs. One of the best app for this purpose is “Juice Defender” available in both paid and free versions in android market.  “Juice Defender” lets you configure a bunch of parameters to govern your phone’s power usage. You could set android to automatically switch off data services during the night, for example, or to only enable synchronization when your screen is actually on.

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Easy to Tether Your Android Phone

 Tether Android with Proxoid

(Free, no root required, some configuration)

If you don’t want to gain root but know enough to get around the command line and use proxy servers, the Proxoid Android app can tether your phone for free. Proxoid turns your Android device into a proxy server that your computer uses to make internet requests. Proxoid is free in the Android market, but to get it working you have to install the Android SDK or device drivers onto your computer, tweak some of the settings, and then configure your browser to use a proxy server whenever you want to tether. Here are the installation instructions.

To connect to the internet via Proxoid, on the phone you tap a button to start the proxy server. On your Mac you enter a command in the Terminal and on Windows you run a batch file to start the tunnel, then you set your web browser to use that proxy.

The pros of this method are that it’s free and you don’t need to gain root, so it’s less risky. The cons are that you’ve got to install the Android SDK (something really only developers should have to do), and set your browser to use the proxy server each time you want to tether.

Note: Proxoid is the only method I haven’t tested myself on the Nexus One. Proxoid’s documentation is a bit rough—the Mac installation instructions are second-hand, as the author doesn’t own a Mac—and there isn’t a Nexus One-specific listing. Let me know if you’re successfully using Proxoid on your N1 and what OS you’re using.

 Tether Android with PDAnet

($30, no root required, minimal configuration)

Finally, the PDAnet Android application lets you tether Android using an app on the phone plus simple software you install on your computer.

PDAnet costs $30 if you want to access https ports (which the free version blocks). To connect to the internet via the phone, you tap a button to start PDAnet on the phone, and click “Connect” in the PDAnet on your computer.

The pros of PDAnet are that it’s risk-free, easy to use, and requires minimal setup. (You do have to enable USB debugging on your phone, which is the geekiest step it involves, but that’s just a checkbox in your phone’s settings.) The cons of PDAnet is that it requires the PDAnet software on your computer and that it $30 costs.

 Tether Android with Apps that Need Root

(Free, heavy configuration)

The Android Wi-Fi Tether application turns your phone into a Wi-Fi hotspot—essentially a MiFi—in one tap. The catch? You have to gain root access to your phone, a multi-step process that uses an unofficial Android add-on which can brick your phone if applied incorrectly. Rooting Android is doable for geeks and hackers with experience soft-modding hardware, but it’s not something most users could (or should!) do.

If you’re up for getting root access in Android, the Android and Me blog runs down how to do it. It’s a multi-step process that involves unlocking your phone’s bootloader, flashing a recovery image, and flashing an add-on to the default Nexus One firmware. Not for the faint of heart, but definitely doable if you’ve ever upgraded your router’s firmware or hacked your Xbox. Here’s a video of the process from Android and Me:

The pros of this method: it’s free and it makes your phone act as a Wi-Fi hotspot that any computer can connect to without extra software or messing with your computer’s setting. The cons: you can seriously screw up your phone if something goes wrong, and you may be sacrificing over-the-air automatic Android updates in the future. (If OTA updates cease, you can always flash your recovery image—but this just means your rooted phone requires maintenance a non-rooted phone does not.)