How to Fix Bad DROID Turbo Android 5.1 Battery Life

At the end of June after over six months of waiting the Verizon Motorola DROID Turbo finally received the highly anticipated Android 5.1.1 Lollipop update. It had been rumored for months, delayed a few times, then finally rolled out to owners on July 1st. However, the update brought a few problems with it, most notably battery life issues.

Android 5.1 Lollipop, the successor to Android 4.4 KitKat, was released in November of last year just a few weeks after Verizon debuted the DROID Turbo, which is part of the reason it never received the original Lollipop release, as Google quickly released multiple updates to Android 5.0 Lollipop, including Android 5.1.1 Lollipop.

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Read: DROID Turbo Lollipop Problems & Fixes

So far the Verizon DROID Turbo Android 5.1.1 Lollipop update has been running extremely smooth for the vast majority of owners. That said, as you can see from the link above the update did bring problems or issues that multiple owners are facing, and here we want to try and tackle one of the most important problems, which is battery life. Read on for a few details and some potential fixes.

Droid Turbo Review -9

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When the Moto DROID Turbo Android Lollipop update arrived it brought an entire new experience to the powerful smartphone. Android 5.1 Lollipop completely changes the entire look and feel of the device with Google’s material design interface, the lockscreen and notification bar changed, tons of animations and effects were added, not to mention new features, and much much more.

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Read: Android 5.0 vs Android 4.4 KitKat: What’s New in Lollipop

The link above compares stock Android 4.4 KitKat to Android 5.0, which is very similar to the current software on the DROID Turbo. There is a lot that’s new, and a lot to see. However, not listed in the huge changelog of features and improvements were a few problems.

We’ve been hearing complaints about a few different things, but the biggest one is without a doubt, battery life. The DROID Turbo has a huge 3,900 mAh battery that Verizon promises will deliver 48 hours of battery life. Users are complaining that it no longer lasts two days, and in fact, some are claiming they can’t even make it through an entire day of moderate usage. Meaning Android 5.1 is draining the battery at a substantially faster rate. There are a few things we can do to try and relieve this problem, so lets get started.

DROID Turbo Lollipop Battery Life Fixes

When it comes to figuring out why battery life is suffering, a lot of things come into play. A few quick ideas are disabling apps or bloatware installed by Verizon. Uninstalling apps you don’t use very often, or look under the battery setting and see which apps are using the most battery life. Try a few of the steps above, but make sure to also wipe the device cache after the Lollipop update, which we’ll explain how to do below.

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Another big one is a WiFi setting where the DROID Turbo constantly scans for a WiFi network, and notifies you when one is available. Head into settings > Wi-Fi, then hit the three dots or settings button and tap Advanced, and turn off Wi-Fi scanning.

Location and GPS

Another large drain aside from the actual screen is location data and GPS. These chips inside the phone can constantly be talking to Facebook, Google Maps or Navigation, and other 3rd party apps and will make a huge dent in your battery life. With Android 4.2 Jelly Bean Google changed this, and it’s even better in Android 4.4 and Android 5.0 Lollipop. The screenshots below are from Android 4.4, but should be in the same place now that the DROID Turbo is on Lollipop.

Turbo-location

Head to Settings > Location > and set the mode to Battery Saving. This uses WiFi and mobile networks to determine your phones location, rather than the power-hungry GPS chips inside your device. Navigation may not be as accurate, but still seems to work just fine and get me to places when battery saving mode is enabled. For navigation you’ll need to switch back to high accuracy for best results.

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Clear Cache

The last thing we want to do, but probably the best bet for an improved experience, is a factory data reset and erasing all user data. However, before we try that clearing the cache typically cleans up some fragmented update files and junk, and will improve performance and battery life. So here’s how to clear your cache on the DROID Turbo after you’ve updated to Android 5.1 Lollipop.

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  • Power off the DROID Turbo.
  • Press and hold the Volume Down button and Power button for 3-5 seconds then release.
  • From the ‘Boot Mode Selection Menu’ screen, select Recovery mode.
  • Navigate by hitting volume up/down to scroll, and power to select.
  • From the ‘Android system recovery’ screen (Android figure lying on his back), press and hold the Power button then press and release the Volume Up button to display the menu options.
  • User volume up/down to navigate to and select wipe cache partition. (Do not select Wipe Data)
  • Let this finish then select reboot system now.

This will clear your cache and all the temporary files from app installs, software updates, and other things. Clearing everything up to allow for better performance and battery life.

Factory Data Reset

If all of the steps above don’t improve battery life, the last resort but probably the best route is a factory data rest. I do this after every update to start with a fresh clean slate, but it will erase all user data, apps, files, pictures, downloads and information. Essentially making the device the same way it was out of the box, or from the factory.

This is a last resort if the existing problems or battery life is still enough to warrant such a drastic move.

Read: How to Backup Android in 5 Easy Steps

To factory reset the DROID Turbo head into Settings > Backup & Reset > Factory Data Reset > and tap Reset Phone. This will completely erase everything, reboot, and start fresh. Users can then use the new Android 5.0 Lollipop restore function to download all previously used apps. The new Tap n Go restore works great, if you have another device to restore from, or hit the drop-down option and select your DROID Turbo, and restore all apps from your Google sync account.

Turbo Charging Slower After Lollipop

We’re also hearing a few reports of slower charging after the update, which we’re investigating. The DROID Turbo has a feature called turbo charging, or Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 that lets it charge quicker than most devices. Something we’ve seen from recent Samsung, LG, and other devices. However, users are claiming that after Android 5.1 the Turbo Charging doesn’t charge as fast.

turbo-charger-motorola

There’s no solution to this at the moment, and we’ve reached out to Verizon and Motorola for additional details, and will report back once we know more. Are you experiencing slower charging speeds since updating to Android 5.1 Lollipop? The clearing of cache or a factory data reset may fix this as well, so give those steps a try if charging is truly an issue.

Battery Saver

The DROID Turbo update to the latest Android 5.1 Lollipop introduces a new battery saver mode that’s rather useful and customizable, and this is something Turbo owners can do to preserve battery life when they actually need it. This turns off non-essential apps and services once your battery gets to a certain point, to save as much as possible for important things like calls and texts.

Battery Saver mode can be turned on by heading to Settings > Battery and flipping the battery saver mode option. W-Fi, Bluetooth, and data for browsing the web, Facebook, voice controls, screen brightness and more will all be lowered or turned off. This turns the phone into a regular phone (not smart) but 20% remaining can last for hours in case of an emergency.

Give all of the steps above, and if battery life problems continue we may see an update from Verizon and Motorola to address the problem. We’ll keep an eye out for information, and report back if an update becomes available.