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How To Video: Extend battery life on Android 4.4 KitKat

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How To Video: Extend battery life on Android 4.4 KitKat

2:33 /

Reaching for the charger too often? Find out which new settings are draining your Android 4.4 phone's battery life.

With every new operating system comes a set of new features and settings that drain your battery. KitKat, here on the Nexus 5, is no exception. So, if you want better battery life, here are some tips. GPS is always a big battery hog even when you're not using Google Maps. When you check in using Facebook or even take a photo, your phone pinpoints your location. To minimize the effects on your battery, head over to Settings, Location, then Mode and enable Battery Saving. Most of the time, you'll still get a pretty accurate location reading, and for the times you need precise tracking, switch it back to High Accuracy. Google Search is also a culprit with its new Hotword Detection. Any time you're on the Home screen, you can say, "Okay, Google," to prompt a new search or voice action. But that means your phone is constantly listening and waiting for you to say those magic words. To turn that feature off, head to Google Now, then Settings, then Voice, and disable Hotword Detection. If you have an NFC-enabled phone, like this Nexus 5, make sure it's only on when you need it and same goes for Android Beam which is based on NFC. Just head to Settings, then More under that Wireless and Network section to disable it. You should also check to see that KitKat is only syncing the data you absolutely want synced. General syncing options can be found under Account Settings. Here, you'll find all the data that's being synced. To disable one, just uncheck the box. Google photos, in particular, is a big battery hog, so if you don't need Google uploading every photo you take, be sure to disable it. And finally, don't forget to make use of the battery tool in the Quick Settings menu. Just swipe down to reveal the notification bar, hit this icon, then tap the battery icon. Here, you'll see a list of processes and how much battery they're consuming. If you see that an app is consuming too much of your battery, shut it down. If you have any questions along the way, hit me up on Twitter and check out HowTo.cnet.com for more KitKat tips and tricks. For CNET.com, I'm Sharon Vaknin.
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