Friday tech tip: how to charge your phone faster

By: John McGarvey

Date: 6 September 2013

Plane - use flight mode{{}}

Sometimes, you don't have the time to wait for your phone to charge fully. Perhaps there's time to give it a quick boost, but you're not sure if the part-charged battery will make it through the day.

Well, this week's Friday tech tip should come in handy next time you need to boost your smart phone's battery by the maximum amount in the shortest-possible time.

It's really simple: even while your phone is charging, it's still using power. Assuming you keep the screen off, the most significant draw on the battery comes from staying connected to mobile and wireless networks and Bluetooth devices.

So, to reduce the draw on the battery, switch your phone into flight mode. This turns off all the wireless radios inside your phone, so they don't use power:

  • On an iPhone, tap Settings, and select the Airplane Mode option.
  • On most Android handsets, go to System Settings and turn Airplane Mode on.
  • On Windows Phone, flick left to the App List, tap Settings, then tap Flight Mode.
  • On BlackBerry handsets, tap Manage Connections, then All Off.

If you leave it in flight mode while it charges, you'll find your phone's battery fills up a little faster.

Just remember: you won't be able to make or receive calls or texts while in flight mode, so be careful if you're expecting to hear from someone.

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