Find Out How Long Your iPhone Battery is Really Lasting
The iPhone battery lasts a while, and according to Apple it should offer around 8 hours of talk time, 8 hours of internet use over LTE / 3G, 10 hours of internet use over wi-fi, 10 hours of video playback, and 40 hours of audio playback.
Additionally, the standby time, that is the time where it’s not in use but it retains a charge, is said to last up to 225 hours (almost a week and a half!). But various iOS updates are often reported to either better or worsen battery life, and it’s a seemingly never-ending stream of opinions every time an iOS version is released whether or not it’s helping or reducing the longevity of the iPhones battery.
Rather than just having a loose idea or opinion based on perception, have you ever wondered how long your iPhone battery is really lasting? Well you don’t have to wonder, because you can get battery usage data right on the iPhone itself.
How to See Battery Life & Usage Data on the iPhone
You’ll probably want the battery percentage indicator on to get the most use out of this, if you don’t have it enabled you can flip it on in the Settings along the way.
For best results and to have the most accuracy regarding the total iPhone battery life, wait until your iPhone is somewhere between 1% and 5% remaining battery to check the settings before drawing any conclusions.
Checking Exact Battery Usage on iPhone
For modern releases of iOS with iPhone:
- Open the “Settings” app and go to “Battery”
- Scroll down all the way to the bottom of the Battery Usage section to “Time Since Last Charge” to see the exact amount of time iPhone battery is lasting, broken into two sections
- Usage: shows how much actual use the iPhone has had on battery power, since the last time it was fully charged
- Standby: shows how long the iPhone has been sitting idle on battery since last full charge
Similarly, I find it helpful to turn on showing iPhone battery percentage indicator as well.
Checking Battery Usage on Older iPhone and iOS Releases
Older iOS devices have this option as well, though the setting is in a different location:
- Open “Settings” and go to “General”
- Tap on “Usage” and scroll down, looking for “Time since last full charge”
- Usage: Shows how much actual use the iPhone has had in hours and minutes, since the last time it was fully charged
- Standby: Shows how long the iPhone has been sitting idle since it last completed a charge
- Optional: Toggle “Battery Percentage” to ON
What you’ll see will look something like this:
Now that you know exactly how long the battery is lasting since it was last charged, you can help determine if what you see is normal or not. The easiest way to know if the battery usage is normal is to compare what you see relative to your battery percentage remaining, to what Apple specifies as within their range. This is going to vary widely per device and per how you use it, but in most cases about 7-9 hours of usage a day is normal. There are extremes though, and if you’re at 2% battery with 22 hours of usage, you’re in unusually good shape.Likewise, if you’re at 2% battery with only an hour usage, something isn’t working properly and you’ll probably want to try and fix it.
Here’s an example of extraordinarily good battery life on an iPhone, this is unusual and should not be considered normal at all:
If you see something like the image below, with two dashes through the battery usage indicators, it usually just means not enough data has been gathered. Either the iPhone needs to charge to 100% again so it can accurately gather data, or the iPhone has just now been disconnected and so there is simply nothing to report back.
Is the Battery Draining Faster, Or Are You Just Using It More?
Oftentimes people get a new iPhone or new iOS version and end up playing around with it more, which leads to a perception of reduced battery life, when in fact it’s just that they’re using the device more often. On the other hand, there are cases where an iPhone battery is clearly defective or not functioning properly for one reason or another, and those cases can be easily identified by looking at the real life battery usage data provided in Settings.
The Battery Is Definitely Not Lasting Long Enough, Now What?
If you do think your iPhone battery isn’t lasting as long as it should be, there are a variety of things to consider and to look at:
- Find out if an app is using Location Services, and consider disabling it, pinging location constantly can be a leading cause of battery problems
- Follow general tips to improve battery life by adjusting settings and turning off unnecessary features
- Charge the iPhone to 100%, then drain the battery and recharge it back to 100%, often called calibrating, this can resolve many complaints about battery health particularly on older devices
- Try backing up and restoring the device, then restore from backup to see if it improves
- Contact Apple Support or visit an Apple Store if nothing else works, you may have a defective iPhone and they can perform tests to determine this, if your battery is found to not work properly they will often swap out a new device on the spot
If you’re going to either try a full iOS restore, or if you’re going to take the device into Apple for support, always back it up first, whether that is to iCloud or backing up to the computer with iTunes. Without a backup, you might lose your data and personalization on the iPhone and have to reconfigure everything again.