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Maximizing Your Samsung Galaxy S3: Improving Battery Life

Samsung Galaxy S3

Whether you recently received your Samsung Galaxy S3 over the holidays or have had it for many months now, there are certainly ways to make an already great phone experience turn into an excellent one.

That’s why Mobile Magazine while be taking a deeper look at the Samsung Galaxy S3 over the next several weeks with a new article series, “Maximizing Your Samsung Galaxy S3”.

For some users (especially those who have had their phones for a while) some of these topics might just seem like common sense. For others some of these tips might really help them get around the UI better, improve battery life, custom the start screen and much more.

Today’s topic is all about extending your battery life. Keep in mind that some of these tricks might only be useful when your phone is nearing the end of a charge and you need to just get a few more minutes out of the device in order to tide you over until you get to your charger.

Alright, so let’s dive in and take a look at just a few things that could potentially help you maximize your Galaxy S3’s battery life.

Power Saving Option

If you’ve had the S3 for a while now, or jumped in and played around– you probably already know all about the Samsung Galaxy S3’s Power Saving options. Enabling this mode will limit the maximum CPU speed, change background colors throughout your system apps and lower the screen power.

Go Dark with the Colors

Some screen profiles actually use a bit more power than others, particularly choosing a profile that is darker in color isn’t a bad idea. Using darker backgrounds can also help a little.

Also, you might want to head over to Settings>Display>Brightness and bring things down a bit.

Don’t go too crazy here though, as getting a little better battery life probably won’t mean much if using your phone becomes a pain because you are straining your eyes just to see what you are doing.

Screen Time Out

The Galaxy S3 has a special “motion detect” method that should automatically know whether you are looking at your phone or not and have your screen dim out according. Make sure this setting is on. If not, you can also go to “Screen Timeout” and make it so the screen turns off after a certain amount of time.

Turn Off Wi-Fi/Bluetooth When You Don’t Need Them

When you have no real need for extra radios like Bluetooth, turn them off. If they are on, they are constantly scanning and could be putting extra pressure on your battery.

Interactive Wallpapers and Fancy Ringtones

Believe it or not, both of these things can suck out extra juice from your battery. Turning off the interactive wallpaper can add a little extra life if you need it.

Additionally, use beeps and short tones for your ringer as opposed to vibrate or a long musical tune.

Going Beyond Stock Options….

Beyond the tricks listed above, there are also third party apps that can do even more for your battery life. Some of these apps include task killers like “Advanced Task Killer”. That being said, many techies across the web have put task killers to the test to see if they really help with speed and with battery life. The conclusion? It seems to be mixed, but for the most part you probably won’t find much gain here.

If you think that there is a specific app that might be bringing you massive battery drain, you can always use the built-in battery usage tool to check for sure:  Settings > About Phone > Battery Usage

Looking a 3rd party app specific to increasing battery life? JuiceDefender Free or the more powerful Pro version might be worth a look. Keep in mind that the Pro version will set you back $5.

Since the Galaxy S3 has a removable battery, there is also the option of buying a 3rd party or even official larger battery for your S3, such as the S3 3000 mAh battery from Samsung.

Did I miss specific trick or excellent app that you feel could make a big difference in battery life? Perhaps you feel one of the suggestions really doesn’t do much for battery gain? Share with our readers (and us) below!



About Andrew Grush

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  1. No phone that offers multiple ops and apps should have a battery that requires it all be turned off. Samsung should build and sell phones that can operate a full day with every thing running. Someone said if you are running all the stuff in your car on just the battery, it would die. Tell that to the Tesla owner who runs A/C sitting at lights with his radio and all navigation and every other imaginable item running – and still gets 400 miles on a charge.
    There is now a 6300 battery on the aftermarket that keeps the phone running without all this shutting off nonsense. Shame on Samsung for selling the phone with inferior battery power.

    Bottom line – no phone should lose power just becuase you are using it as it is configured to be used. The manufacturer has a responsibility to be HONEST and not sell what can’t be used – or provide the means to use it.

    Shame on Samsung

  2. Hey guys, there’s a great new Thing for S3 out there its an 6300 MAH Battery on AMAZON, its called ZERO LEMON. I bought it and I love it, with heaviest use I can go at least 48 hours before charging, with Medium use I charge it every 5 Days. Love it, I bought 3 of them, and there only like 30 bucks each. love it love it love it, better than Iphone any day :)

  3. switch off mobile data,switch off the active background,switch off blue tooth and also wifi. set the display to lowest brightness and uninstall damn f… software that bothers your phone. I use the gs3 up to its limits and have to recharge only every 48 hrs.
    clearing the ram frequently also helps.

  4. The best way to keep your battery up to speed is by replacing it. After recharging 250-300 times it will become weaker and after 700 to max 1.000 times a battery dies, it’s simple… Just buy a new one every 6-8 months to make sure you’ll get the best out of your phone.

  5. I too have been experiencing HUGE battery drain problems on my S3 LTE over the last 3 weeks. Slowly been turning things off one by one and testing next day to see what exactly is causing this! Now I’m on day 3 of having fixed the issue and now getting at least 1 and half days of use before re-charging. The absolute biggest problem is remaining logged into facebook! Dont know why and im no scientist lol, but logging out of facebook after checking for updates e.t.c has a 100% difference.

  6. My phone has been on for approximately 9 hours, 41/2 of which were playing music (blue tooth to Jambox speakers) now I’m at %71 battery. I noticed that turning the LED indicator off, adjust your brightness to minimum needed (not max all the time, that’s stupid), Bluetooth off (until needed, un), NFC off (un), mobile hotspot off (un), etc… help a lot. Click on battery and see what apps are taking up the most power, the Android System should be at the top followed by whatever programs and apps are currently running. Disable the ones you don’t need. At the moment I have 71% battery life left, which equals 7h 7m. All I do is talk, text and listen to music. It’s not the phone, it’s not the apps, nor is it the battery. It’s simply the user!

    If i turn my car on (but not the engine) and have the a/c, radio, blinkers, navigation system, wipers, lights, dome lights, trunk light, rolling the power window up and down, all while charging my wife iPhone, guess what THE BATTERY IS GOING TO DIE A LOT SOONER, than if I had just paid attention and turned off what I didn’t need.

    Sorry, If I seem to rant, but I get tired of posts that blame equipment because of misuse, like I do when golfing. I understand that equipment dose fail, but I do know that there isn’t a battery on earth that is self sustaining.


  7. Nothing here that hasn’t already been mentioned before…looks like the only “solution” is an extended battery.

  8. Stefan’s comment helped me. I seemed to have been hit with “charger cable gone bad” problem. I changed cable and it charges faster and discharge rate is acceptable.

  9. we have had ours for about six months and yes its a battery sucker,not very impressed with them at all.both at times will completly discharge in a few hours and why have one with all these options, if you have to turn them all off !! but hey !!! they will all be fixed on the next one ? im sure overseas models have been fixed for years.

  10. I can’t say for sure about the GS3 battery, but my experience is that most phone users complaining about battery life are guilty of significant human errors. The wife and I have the same phones (not GS3’s) and she’s continually running out of juice. We’ll swap batteries and same story. At work, people think I’m some magic healer for Android phones. They bring me their power suckers to see if I can help. Usually something super obvious like continuous Facebook updates over the LTE radio is going on. Turn off radios you don’t use and make sure your apps aren’t preventing deep sleep first before blaming the device.

  11. what about turning off the mobile and put the sim card in a nokia 3310 mobile phone? S3 battery sucks, why do i need to turn off everything ? if the battery cannot handle huge usage then there’s no reason to buy such a phone.

  12. My galaxy was doing fine until just the other day when the O’S needed to be upgraded. Now it won’t hold a charge for two hours! WTF is that all about?

  13. go to settings>more settings>switch off the NFC and S beam. Some people unknowingly keep them on and drain more than 25% of the battery

  14. If you suspect that your phone is charging very slow then try to use another cable with 5 pins. I did that and now it’s charging quicker and battery now last with a screen on time of about 5 hours. That’s about 1 hour longer than I used to get out of the phone. It’s been confirmed around the Web that the cable that comes from Samsung is of poor quality.

    • madmitchsuzuki

      good info mate, this confirms my patchy battery performance issues… i tried all the “turn offs” & had no luck, some days it was fine, others it was dead by mid morning after an over-night charge, i was considering longer life “brick” batteries when i came across this post… now i use a different lead & problem solved, on a side note – it seems apparent that in many cases, the devices with the worst cases of battery failure, are usually due to operators’ failure to properly initialize the new battery …

  15. I too have had my own frustrations with the phone but overall I still love it 1 of the biggest things for me is the battery life but 1 of the things that I noticed that helps a lot especially for the person that said they lose 50 percent while you’re sleeping or overnight or such I go into power saving options at the top of the screen ppull down tab. Make sure that you have maxed out all the limitations on your power saving settings. Cpu saving checked, screen saving checked, background color and hapticfeedback checked. double check to make sure that all active apps have been stopped. Sometimes when I’m playing my music through the media player even when I stop listening to it I go into active apps and see that it still running. Things like that drain your phone like crazy all running apps need to be stopped and go into the RAM settings and clear the memory out this shuts down all internal functions that arent necessary. Hold down the home button on the front bottom of the phone and go into task manager which has the active application and RAM setting adjustment. Once you have already had the power saving options set up in the main settings functions they stay locked into your phone so I make sure I do the steps each time I’m not going to be using my phone for a while it literally takes me less than 10 seconds to do this to my phone and my battery usage is way better than it used to be. 1St time ever commenting to help NE1. If it helps plz rply as such. Good luck.

  16. Few simple and effective ways to improve battery life
    1. Samsung S3 has a super amoled display, so have a black wallpaper.
    2. Install juice defender this will manage your Internet traffic and it can be customised as well
    3. Install dx battery saver and it would help you when u charge your phone.
    4. Remove all motion sensors and keep the screen timeout to 1 min.
    5. Install better battery stats app from play store, and it will help you to identify any wake locks that is causing battery drain.. There are lot of apps in the market whole are battery drainers.
    Do these simple steps and share your feedback.

  17. There is one more thing which really improves battery performance. After I did this when I am sleeping I only loose 4 or 5%. Go to Settings -> wi-fi -> Advanced -> keep wi-FI on during sleep and select only when plugged in. Let me know how it worked out for you.

  18. Yes….even with mobile data, sync, WiFi, Bluetooth OFF. The worst part is all of the dropped calls I keep having, I had an lg connect before this gs3 and had full signal anywhere in my house…. This gs3… if I stopwhen walking around my kitchen island over and over and over while I’m on the phone I lose my signal. I just don’t understand it….

  19. Me too…I HATE THIS PHONE and am kicking myself everyday for buying the damn thing. Battery is worthless….even after removing every single 3rd party app. Not nearly as bad as the iphone5…that beast was terrible & talk about user UNFRIENDLY.. but this battery thing on the GS3 can make even the kindest person wanna go postal.

  20. I do all of the above and more and my battery drops 58% in about 5 hours ans 15 minutes WHILE I AM SLEEPING!!!! Needless to say…i am not happy with the samsung galaxy S3 at all :(

    • Do a factory reset (backup first) . Normally all drain app get removed as the phone start from factory settings. After that you can install apps and see which one drain your battery.

    • I’ve had alot of problems with my battery as it drains so fast. I bought another battery just to get through the day and I only use it moderate to heavy. When my contract ends I will not be getting another samsung phone. Over rated if you ask me.

  21. turn off mobile data and sync!

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