Three quick ways to improve laptop battery life

Like chocolate and episodes of Mad Men, there's no such thing as too much battery life.

Like chocolate and episodes of Mad Men, there's no such thing as too much battery life. Alas, it's the rare notebook battery that'll give you more than a few hours-unless you know some tricks for squeezing extra juice. Remember these three tips the next time you travel:

Disable Bluetooth and Wi-Fi: Few airplanes offer Wi-Fi (yet), so turn off your notebook's power-sucking Wi-Fi radio. Same goes for Bluetooth.

Drop the screen brightness: You can afford to keep screen brightness cranked up when your notebook is plugged into an outlet, but not when you're flying coach. Drop the brightness setting a few notches, then get back to work. Chances are you'll hardly notice the difference. Then drop it a few more notches. The lower, the better.

Watch downloads, not DVDs: Notebooks are great for watching movies, but DVD drives consume a considerable amount of power. Therefore, leave the DVDs behind and choose digital downloads instead. Stock your hard drive with movies from Amazon or iTunes and you'll be able to watch longer. Don't want to pay for movies you already own? Use a tool like Handbrake to rip your DVDs, creating MPEG-4 files you can store on your hard drive (or put on your iPod, thus saving your notebook even more power).

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags notebookslaptopslaptop batteries

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Rick Broida

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?