Smartphones have become like mini-computers, however a prevailing problem for all mobile devices is the short battery life. Sometimes I am unable to get through the day on a single charge. The problem with smartphones is that there are a lot of different features that can increase battery consumption. However, it is impractical to disable all the features all the time; what is the point of a smartphone if all you do is make phone calls! This is where the wonderful app JuiceDefender comes in. It allows you to tweak a number of settings (including disabling battery hungry features) to ensure you get the most out of your phone’s battery.
To enable JuiceDefender in its basic mode, navigate to the Status tab and select enabled.
Once you have enabled JuiceDefender you can see a summary of all the settings.
Next you can select a profile. The default profile is the default setting which you can use as a starting point to customise JuiceDefender
If you want to really tweak your phones settings using JuiceDefender, select customize and hit confirm. If you would like to change the more “dangerous” settings, select advanced.
For the purposes of this review I will be demoing the app with the advanced option enabled.
The controls tab allows you to decide which data settings you want JuiceDefender to control.
Firstly, you can have JuiceDefender automatically control (enable/disable) your mobile data. You can also have it prefer WiFi in situations where a wireless connection is available. (Tablet mode is for devices which are not going to be used as phones, i.e. it disables your cell radio).
Secondly, you can enable whether the mobile data used will be over a 2G or 3G network (this requires the installation of JuiceDefender AOSP). You can also set it so that your data switches to 2G when on WiFi.
Finally, enabling AutoSync let’s JuiceDefender toggle when data is synchronised. Alternatively, you can set it to ping to only sync Google apps (and not other apps such as Facebook and Twitter).
If you are uncomfortable with the app deciding when to turn the data sync on, you can set the frequency and duration for mobile data and background synchronisation to be activated.
The triggers tab allows you to enable/disable certain settings based on pre-determined “triggers”.
Battery Threshold: To squeeze the last few drops out of your battery, you can set a battery threshold at which all data connectivity will be disabled. For example, you can set it so that if your battery falls below 15%, mobile data will be disabled. Additionally, you can ensure that when you connect your device to a charger the battery threshold trigger is disabled.
Apps: You can also enable or disable connectivity when certain apps are running (control up to 4 apps in the free version). For example, if you are playing a game, it is unlikely you need data to be running. In contrast, if you are using a instant messaging app you probably want to ensure that data is not disabled.
Visible means data will be enabled when the app is running. Disabled means that connectivity is disabled while an app is running. Service means that data connectivity for that app is always running (even if it is in the background).
To ensure that you are not cut-off in the middle of something you can enable Traffic to ensure that data is not disabled while there is an on-going data transfer and you can enable Screen to ensure that while your screen is turned on so is your mobile data.
You can enable notifications to monitor the status of JuiceDefender.
The Toggle mobile data widget allows you to quickly enable/disable mobile data.
The JuiceDefender default widget shows an estimate of how much battery life was improved by using the app as well as which services are enabled.
JuiceDefender by itself is an incredibly useful app. After playing around with the settings initially, the app will fade to the background and help you get the most out of your battery.
However, if you feel that you require even more control you may want to consider downloading the paid version of the app. Amongst other advanced features it allows you to control your WiFi radio depending on your location, create more intricate schedules (night, peak and weekends), overclock your CPU, and disable data when your screen times out or your device locks.