Sorry about the stupid title. Wanted to make it easy to search. Here is what I did to extend my battery life.
First, I live in the country. So I usually only get 2 bars. There is nothing I can do to get a better signal. Moving is NOT an option. Like many, I was getting what I consider poor battery life. I was averaging 7-8 hours on a charge. My low was 5 hours. As of tonight, i have managed to get 15 hours on this charge. Pretty good, huh?
1) I let the battery charge all the way. Then I turned the phone off, charged it again while off, and turned it back on.
2) I let the battery drain all the way down. You should NOT do that. Let it drain to 5%. No lower. That's what I meant to do but it goes from 5% to turned off VERY FAST. Have it near a charger when it gets near. By the way, as others have noted, I got almost and 1 1/2 hours out of AFTER it hit 15%. Just so you're aware of it. REMEMBER : Let it charge to full before unplugging it and let it run till 15% before charging. You shouldn't let it get below 15% very often, rarely in fact.
3) I installed ATK and set it to auto, when the screen goes off. HIGH security setting. I have it kill everything except what I like. I like messages, clock, calendar, and voicemail. I added what I wlike to the exclusions so I don't have to look at them.Basically nothing I know will use CPU, waste memory, or use the wireless a lot. By the way, Facebook app is a BIG memory hog. As noted elsewhere, DO NOT TURN OFF ANY THING CRITICAL FOR YOUR SYSTEM TO RUN. IF YOU DON'T KNOW eekdayTHE DIFFERENCE, EITHER DON'T TURN IT OFF OR LOOK UP IF ITS IMPORTANT. I've been in computers for about 22 years, so I can tell the difference. YOU might not be able too. NO insult, just saying is all. If you start closing everything, you might start getting force close errors all the time, also as others have noted. I leave ATK on high security and it seems to be a pretty safe setting.
4) I turned off auto-snyc. Almost all the apps snyc when you open them. And I open them often. If not, a quick tap on refresh will force a sync. No big for me personally.
5) This, in my opinion, is the biggest one. I have WiFi at home. So i turned off Mobile Data with the widget and enabled WiFi. All day except when I went into town. I had it set to Always on yesterday, but I turned it to auto off after 15 mins. today and got an extra 3 hours. I got 12 hours yesterday doing the same thing, but with the WiFi set to always on. This setting is reached from the WiFi location page, then hit the menu key. The actual button on your phone. Then go to advanced.
6) I have the screen brightness turned down to low(around 15-20%) and Auto brightness turned off.
7) I have GPS, 4G, and Bluetooth turned off unless I'm using them. WiFi is turned on and Mobile data off when at home , and WiFi off and Mobile data on when around town.
8) I dont use a "live" background.
I get the distinct feeling turning off the 3G and using WiFi allowed me these great times. I will go back and up my brightness, enable auto sync, and disable ATK to see what happens. I'm not entirely convinced of ATK's relevance, so tomorrow it will get disabled and I will see what happens. Anyway, this is how I did it. Hope it helps.
I did a little heavier usage the day after posting this thread and still got 13.5 hours of battery life with ATK. I got the 15 on a day of very heavy web surfing and heavy txt' ing with some light phone calls, but little gaming. Still pretty good though.
Today I turned off ATK. And guess what? I got 8.5 hours of use. Now, I did spend a little more time in town than usual, but still. About the same 7-8 hours. I got home and put it on the charger and let it get to 90%. I usually don't do this, I let it charge till the light comes on. I was being impatient. Shame on me. Anyway, I took it off the charger and I turned ATK back on. Guess what? 5 hours later and still at 55%.
So, this confirms that it must be Some App draining my battery. Just gotta figure out which one. Also confirms that leaving the Mobile data turned off and wifi turned on saves battery. I'm going to do one more test tomorrow with a slight variation and report back.
I did one more test. Today I left it on wifi but with mobile data off. I also left ATK off. I DID make it 9 hours 20 mins.. So, leaving the mobile data off, and the wifi on definitely saves on battery. So does letting ATK run and set to my specifications as I said earlier.
It does seem that ATK had the greater effect. Which suprised me. I didn't expect that at all. I'll be doing some more tess over the next few days, but unless something changes, I'm not updating the post.
In conclusion, The best combo is ATK with constant wifi, using 3G/4G only when absolutely necessary. I was able to extend my battery life from a max of 8 hours to 15 hours.
I hope this helps at least someone out there and encourages others to do their own testing, and see for themselves.
Also, not to put in a plug for a product, bc I know this is the wrong thread, but I downloaded Swype the other day and it freaking rocks. Like, its almost as awesome as my Evo. For real.