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How to Fix Bad iPhone 12 Battery Life

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If your iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro, or iPhone 12 Pro Max’s battery life starts draining faster than it should, there are some steps you should take before getting in touch with Apple customer support.

We haven’t seen widespread complaints about battery life, but some iPhone 12 users are saying their device’s battery is draining faster than it should be.

Battery life issues are common, particularly after Apple releases new iOS 15 software, and we know that 5G drain batteries faster than LTE so these complaints aren’t surprising.

If you start noticing severe battery drain there are some steps you can take to try and resolve the issue. In this guide we’ll take you through some fixes that might help you fix bad iPhone 12 battery life.

These are fixes that have worked for us over the years and they might help you solve your battery issues in minutes and help you avoid a chat with Apple customer service or a visit to the Apple Store.

Restart Your Phone

If your battery starts draining faster than you think it should, we always recommend restarting your phone before doing anything else.

Power your iPhone 12, iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12 Pro, or iPhone 12 Pro Max down, wait a minute, and power it back on. If it’s still draining quickly, move on to these other steps.

Update Your iPhone

Apple periodically releases iOS 15 software updates for the iPhone. Point updates (x.x.x) are typically focused on fixing bugs while milestone upgrades (x.x) usually deliver a mix of features and fixes.

The company might not call out battery life fixes in an iOS 15 update’s change log, but new firmware always has the potential to help alleviate battery issues.

For more information about the latest version of iOS 15, have a look at that guide.

Turn Off 5G

The iPhone 12 series supports 5G connectivity. While fast, it could drain your battery much faster than LTE does. If you don’t need to use 5G or you don’t need to use it all the time, head into your iPhone 12’s settings.

iOS has a few 5G settings that you’ll want to commit to your memory bank. To find these you’ll want to head into Settings, then Cellular, then Cellular Data Options, then Voice & Data.

If you’re in the right place you’ll notice three options:

  • 5G On
  • 5G Auto
  • LTE

5G On means your iPhone will use 5G whenever it’s available, even if it could kill your device’s battery life.

The 5G Auto option only uses 5G only when it won’t significantly drain your phone’s battery. 5G Auto is the default and the option most people should select.

Check Your Apps

Apps can sometimes have a negative impact on your phone’s battery life and you’ll want to look into them if you’re noticing abnormal drain.

Checking app performance is extremely easy on the iPhone 12 series. Here’s how to do it:

  • Head into your Settings app.
  • Select Battery.
  • Check your battery usage.

This battery usage tool shows you the apps draining your iPhone 12’s battery and when they’re doing so.

If you use an app a lot, it will obviously drain more battery than apps you never use. So if you see an app you rarely use sucking up a ton of power, you’ll want to investigate further.

If you see an app sucking up a ton of battery life, try deleting the app from your device and see if things approve.

If the app is essential to your day-to-day use, we recommend downloading the latest update from the developer. If that doesn’t help, and you really need the app to get through your day, you might need to downgrade back to a previous version of iOS 15.

Reset All Settings

If you’re positive it’s not an issue with one or more of your apps, try resetting your iPhone 12’s settings.

Before you do this, note that it will cause your device to forget known Wi-Fi networks so make sure you have your passwords written down or stored somewhere before you do this. Here’s how to do this on iOS 14:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Go to General.
  • Scroll and tap Reset.
  • Tap Reset All Settings and enter your passcode if one is enabled.

If you’re running iOS 15, here’s how to reset all of your iPhone’s settings:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Go to General.
  • Scroll and tap Transfer or Reset iPhone.
  • Tap Reset.
  • Tap Reset All Settings.

Once the process is complete, you’ll need to reconnect your iPhone to your Wi-Fi network(s) and Bluetooth devices.

Use Low Power Mode

Low Power Mode helps you conserve battery life by shutting off services (Hey Siri, automatic downloads, and mail fetch) that could drain your battery.

You can turn Low Power Mode on and off any time you want and the operating system will also prompt you to turn it on whenever your iPhone reaches 20% battery.

If you haven’t done so already, add Low Power Mode to your Control Center. Control Center is the menu that pops up when you swipe up from the bottom or, if you’re using a newer iPhone model, from the top right of the screen. Here’s how to do that:

  • Head to Settings.
  • Tap Control Center.
  • Tap Customize Controls.
  • Tap the green plus sign next to Low Power Mode.

The next time you open up Control Center on your phone you’ll see a battery icon. Tap it to enable, or disable, Low Power Mode on your device.

You can also turn Low Power Mode on via your Settings. Here’s how to do that:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Tap Battery.
  • Tap Low Power Mode.
  • Toggle it On.

Stop Background Refresh

Background App Refresh refreshes apps in the background in order to show you the latest data when you open them. It’s a useful feature, but it can also eat away at battery life. If you don’t need it, try turning it off. Here’s how to do that:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Tap General.
  • Tap Background App Refresh.
  • Turn it off for any applications you don’t use.

You can also turn it completely off if you don’t want to go through your apps one at a time.

Downgrade Your iPhone 12’s Software

If you can’t find a fix for your issue, and/or don’t want to wait for Apple’s next iOS 15 update, you can try downgrading your iPhone 12’s software.

For more on the downgrade process, take a look at our walkthrough.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 15.5 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iOS 15.5 for Better Security

Install iOS 15.5 for Better Security

If security is important to you, you'll want to think about installing Apple's iOS 15.5 update right away.

iOS 15.5 brings 27 new security patches to the iPhone and they are essential if you want to keep your device and its data protected. You can learn more about these patches over on Apple's security site.

If you missed iOS 15.4.1, it had just one new security patch on board. You can read more about it over on Apple's website

If you missed the iOS 15.4 update, it had a whopping 36 new security patches on board. If you want to learn more about these patches, head on over to Apple's security site for the particulars

If you missed iOS 15.3.1, it had one security patch on board. For more about it, head over to Apple's security page

If you missed iOS 15.3, you'll also get its patches with your upgrade. iOS 15.3 brought 10 new security patches to iPhone users. If you're interested in the details, you can read more about them right here.

If you missed iOS 15.2.1, you'll get its security patch with your upgrade. You can learn more about the change over on Apple's website

If you missed Apple's iOS 15.2 update, you'll get its 30+ security patches with your upgrade. You can read all about them over on the company's security site

iOS 15.2 also included some important upgrades to privacy. The software brought the company's App Privacy Report to Settings. This lets you see how often your apps have accessed your location, photos, camera, microphone, contacts and more during the last seven days. You can also see their network activity. 

In addition, iOS 15.2 brought Apple's communication safety features for kids. You'll find these features in the Messages app, in Siri, in Spotlight, and in Search. 

If you missed iOS 15.1, iOS 15.5 will bring its security patches to your iPhone. You can read more about them on Apple's website

If you missed iOS 15.0.2 you'll also get its security patch with your upgrade. You can learn more about it right here.

iOS 15.0 also brought numerous security patches to your iPhone. If you'll be moving up from iOS 14 and you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's security website.

Apple's updated its website with new information about iOS 15's batch of security patches. The company now says the software patched up an issue that could have exposed a user's private Apple ID information and in-app search history. It also says iOS 15 patched up an issue that allowed apps to override Privacy preferences.

If you skipped iOS 14.8 or any older versions of iOS, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 15.5 update as well. 

In addition to those patches, iOS 15 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Siri. Requests made to Siri are now processed on the device itself using Neural Engine. This makes it more secure. 

If you're an Apple Card user, you'll now get a security code that changes regularly to use when you make online transactions. 

Apple's also included a built-in authenticator that's similar to Google Authenticator. This will let you generate verification codes for enhanced sign-in security under your Passwords.

There's also a Mail feature that hides your IP address. 

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Anne Mulvey

    03/25/2021 at 12:14 am

    You forgot to say – turn off Wifi Calling! It’s a big battery drain I hss as be discovered.

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