Extend the battery life of your Fairphone

Below you’ll find a collection of proven tips we gathered from our in-house experts (aka the support team) to help you get more out of each battery charge. While we compiled these tips with Fairphone owners in mind, plenty are useful no matter what kind of smartphone you have.


How to make the most of your battery life

Let’s get straight to some tips on how to optimize the performance of your Fairphone battery. Every battery has a limited lifespan – it will only last for a certain number of charge cycles. And certain functionality, like the screen and data connections, will drain your battery in no time. So the key to ensuring that your battery performs well for as long as possible is to extend the amount of time between charges. Below you’ll find a selection of tactics we use to make the most of the Fairphone’s battery life.

Note: We’ve created the animations/photos below using a Fairphone 2 and Fairphone 1 because the exact functionality can be slightly different.


Battery-PullDown_MenuAccess the Quick Settings pull-down menu for Fairphone 2 (and 1),

by swiping down with two fingers from the top of the screen


1. Adjust your brightness

Your screen consumes a lot of energy, especially with a large, 5 inch screen. To reduce the amount of energy you use,

  • Adapt your display brightness and time to sleep with the display settings (Settings > Display);
  • Change the brightness level to a lower value;
  • Enable the adaptive brightness—the display will dim based on the ambient luminosity;
  • Lower the time to sleep to a lower value such as *30 seconds*. 

Access advanced brightness and sleep settings:

  1. Settings Display
  2. Turn on Adaptive brightness (Fairphone 1: Automatic brightness), which automatically adjusts the brightness on your screen to the ambient light
  3. Here you can also adjust how quickly your phone goes into sleep mode – to save energy, pick a lower time period like 30 seconds.


Battery-brightness_barBrightness bar on the Fairphone 2 and the Fairphone 1


2. Adapt your network settings

Data connections are the second most significant energy consumers. When you use cellular data or Wi-Fi non-stop, you can drain a fully-charged battery in just a few hours. In general, it’s best to disable the connectivity functions that you don’t need. Especially when you are on the go.

Also, make sure your SIMcard is not old or damaged, as it then uses more energy too.

Quickly enable or disable Wi-Fi or Bluetooth:

  1. Open the pull-down menu
  2. Tap the related icon or access this functionality through Settings
  3. Toggle cellular data:
    1. Option 1: tap on the mobile connection symbol in the pull-down menu
    2. Use the Cellular data switch in the top right corner
    3. Option 2: go to SettingsData usage
    4. Set your preferences for each SIM card.

Another way to reduce power consumption is to let the device decide which cellular network to use based on the signal strength, favoring whenever possible the most advanced and energy-efficient technology.

Define your preferred cellular network type:

  1. go to SettingsMoreCellular networks (Fairphone 1: Mobile networks)
  2. select a SIM card
  3. pick 4G (preferred) (Fairphone 1: GSM/WCDMA (auto mode)) as the Preferred network type (Fairphone 1: the Network Mode in 3G service).


Change_connectivity_settings_Settings_More_CellularNetworks_PreferredNetworkType_4GChange your connectivity settings on the Fairphone 2 and the Fairphone 1


Finally, if you can survive for a while without any data or network connections, put your phone in Airplane mode. It’s the best way to conserve energy without completely turning off your phone.

  1. open the pull-down menu
  2. tap on the airplane icon.

Bonus connectivity tips:

  • If you have a weak mobile or Wi-Fi signal, your phone will consume more energy to stay connected. When this happens, try to move closer to the access point or turn off the data connection if you’re not using it
  • If you spend lots of time online, you may want to install an ad blocker to reduce the amount of bandwidth and energy required to load a page.


3. Change your location settings

Location settings can also impact your battery usage - so whenever possible - we recommend switching to a less accurate but more battery-friendly location setting.

Please note

Before you can make any changes, you need to enable Google Location Services and accept the license. If you haven’t done this yet:

  1. go to Settings Location Google Location History.

To optimize your battery usage,

  1. Go to Settings Location Mode
  2. Select Battery saving (Fairphone 1: turn the GPS satellites usage off in Settings Location access).

It’s important to realize that this mode reduces accuracy, so don’t use this if you need very specific location information, such as directions while you’re driving.

If you don’t require any location services at all

  1. Open the pull-down menu (using two fingers)
  2. Disable location functionality by tapping on location icon

You can learn more about location settings on this Google Help page.



Change your location accuracy on the Fairphone 2 and the Fairphone 1


4. Decrease your phone’s workload

Certain apps, accounts and features impact your battery life as well. A few ways to decrease your phone’s workload include:

Clear the cache of the phone: Go to Settings > Storage > Cached Data > Clear Data > OK.

Wallpapers: Choose a static image instead of a dynamic one. To select a new wallpaper, touch and hold a blank space on your home screen, and then tap Wallpapers at the bottom left.

Inactive apps: Uninstall the apps you don’t use. Go to All Apps, hold down the one you want to remove, and slide it to Uninstall at the top of the screen and release your finger.

Accounts: You can remove the online accounts that you don’t use under Settings > Accounts. Locate the account you’d like to remove, and then use the settings menu (three vertical dots) to remove the account.

Users (Fairphone 2 only): Remove unnecessary users by going to Settings > Users. Tap on the cogwheel next to the user profile that you’d like to remove and then tap on Remove user. Please note: the Guest account cannot be removed.

Touch vibration (haptic feedback): Turn off touch vibration under Settings > Sound & notification > Other sounds and disable Vibrate on touch.

Keyboard vibration: Go to Settings > Language & input > Android Keyboard > Preferences and turn off Vibrate on keypress.


5. See what is eating energy and take action

Your phone has a built-in report to help you monitor your battery use.

  1. Go to Settings  Battery to see a graph of your battery level over time (tap it for more detail), plus a list of which apps and functionality use the most energy.


Battery_usage_overview_on_Fairphone-2_and_Fairphone-1Battery usage overview on Fairphone 2 and Fairphone 1


Certain tasks, such as Android OS, Android System, and Google Services are core to the operating system, so they are essential parts and you cannot directly optimize their battery consumption. However, you can take a careful look at the third-party apps (apps that you downloaded yourself)  that have a large impact on your battery, and adjust the settings within the app itself.

When you first start using your Fairphone, you may see drops in the battery report graph. Don’t be concerned – your battery needs to complete a few charging cycles before it’s properly calibrated.