Battery-sucking tablet apps

One of the many things I’ve come to appreciate about Android vs. iOS is that it has much better built-in tools. In particular, it shows you what apps used the most battery power, and which apps used cellular data.

In particular, I learned that some apps on my Nexus 7 were using a lot of battery power even if I did nothing at all with the tablet. Steam, for example. One reason I’d become frustrated with my iPod Touch 4G was that it had poor battery life, and I discovered that it has poor battery life even if I’m not using it. It was down about 75% during 2 days in which it sat on a shelf.

I suspect that if I wiped my iPod and re-introduced the bare minimum of apps, the battery life would improve significantly. As a start I removed the Steam app, I don’t really need push notifications for Steam sales.

Cell data on the Nexus 7 hasn’t been a concern. I’ve used all of 2.2 MB (!) in the last 8 days. You’d think “why bother with cell data at all then,” but it’s nice that stuff like Kindle sync stays up to date even when I’m not in range of wifi, and I could use the Best Buy app to redeem the $30 in reward certificates I earned when I purchased the Nexus 7. I wouldn’t pay a substantial monthly fee for that convenience, but with the free data I’m getting from T Mobile, it’s been effectively a smallish one-time charge.

The only real issue is that some battery usage isn’t all that clear. For example, if an app asks for location data, that power usage doesn’t show up under the app, it shows up under Google Play Services. So all I know is that some app is asking for location frequently and that’s using power.

Get greenify. It lets you force apps to work like iOS where they immediately sleep when in the background.

Also if you’re using the stock android battery meter, you’re missing a lot of data; install betterbatterystats from XDA and look at partial wakelocks.

I’m not really ready to root my Nexus 7. Otherwise I’d get Greenify. Ditto BetterBatteryStats.

Try GSam Battery Monitor, no root required, and really gets into details about what’s doing what with your battery.

I installed it. I’m not really seeing any more detailed information than I get from the Settings menu, but it seems like a decent enough widget, a bit better than the one I had already installed.

I was able to nail down some oddities, like which apps specifically were using the GPS, without having to check each app separately. It did not, IIRC, breakdown wakelock info that is vital for understanding where the biggest chunk of my wasted battery after Cell Standby (shitty reception at home and work make this unlikely to ever improve) and the nebulous “sd card” (I think my sd card is dying and the phone is chugging on trying to read dead sectors over and over again, but it’s just a theory).

Maybe I’ll see more detail after I use it for a while.

Cell standby is 6% of my battery usage. I suppose I should be grateful.

Battery life really hasn’t been a problem with the Nexus 7 so far, though it’s good to be on top of it. I started this thread mainly because it’s nice to see the details, and because it had implications for my iPod battery problems.

Give it a bit. It gives much more detail than the stock one, at least on my S4. You can click on different categories to go deeper into detail. If you click applications, it will list each app that has touched the battery since last charge. You can also see the number of wakelocks, etc. It helped me nail down a couple hungry apps.