Inspired by a Reddit post I saw yesterday, I decided to find out just how much of a difference in battery consumption it would make if the background color on my phone was black or white.
The main reason for wanting to do this is the claims I’ve heard, that cell phones with AMOLED screens does not use any backlight when displaying black.
If changing your homescreen to a darker image indeed helps you conserve battery power, this could mean the difference between getting by on a single charge and having to recharge in the middle of the day.
I quickly came across a small bump as I discovered the maximum time my phone would stay on without automatically turn of the screen was 10 minutes. But after some research I found this app that would make it possible to set the screen on time to whatever I wanted.
I also enabled developer options on my phone so that I could force my phone to not run any background processes while the tests was done.
How I did the test.
Smartphones of today are complex and I won’t pretend that I completely understand everything that influences my phones battery drain. However, by taking a few precautions ( as listed below ) I think this test will be as fair as possible.
- A phone with an AMOLED screen ( Samsung Galaxy Note 4 )
- Wi-Fi – OFF
- airplane mode – ON
- A fully, and newly charged phone ( 100 % battery at test start )
- Auto adjust screentone – OFF
- Automatic brightness – OFF
- Brightness – MAX
- Test time – 30 minutes
- Background services running – 0
Ok I’m off with a stopwatch and my newly created home screen images to see what interesting results I can find.
The test results.
Magically, as if no time has passed at all I’m back with the first test results.
- White background – 92% left after 30 minutes.
Whoa, that is a lot of battery juice consumed in a short amount of time. I had expected that this part of the test would be quite heavy on the battery, but 8 % consumed in a mere 30 minutes is a lot more than I had expected. If I had left it like this it would have been depleted in little more than 6 hours.
- Black background – 98% left after 30 minutes.
Well I have to say this does somewhat seem to prove that having a black homescreen will help you conserve battery. Based on this test result it would seem that I could have left my phone in this state for 30 hours before it would run out. A considerable improvement to the white background image.
Even though the battery readout shown on the homescreen has been known for not beeing the most accurate measurement of battery left on your device, this must in the very least prove that it does indeed matter what kind of background image you have on your Android phone.
If you would like to run your own tests or if this made you decide to change your homescreen to a complete black, I have included the images I used for the test below for you to download.
Once you have downloaded the images you can head on over to your gallery’s download folder. Once you have opened the image you want, hit the three dots in the corner to bring forth the menu. Choose set as, and select home screen.
Hope you found this useful.
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