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Install ChargeBar

Keeping track of your battery life on any device can be a chore. Thankfully, Android allows for some pretty neat ways to help keep track.

CNET contributor Nicole Cozma told us about ChargeBar for Android. ChargeBar gives you a great visual reminder of your battery level. As with a lot of great Android utilities we have covered, it's also free in the Google Play Store.

After you download and install the app, toggle the switch at the top to turn it on.

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Set up the app

Once ChargeBar is enabled, you should see a light blue line across the top of your screen. This line indicates your current battery level. It's a great way to have a constant reminder of your current battery level. Yes, your device does have a small battery icon that does the same thing, but that small icon makes it tough to determine precisely how much battery life you have left, and it can make significant drops in a short time.

If you want to have the ChargeBar always present, even after your device reboots, make sure to check the box to start on boot. You can also decide if you want the bar to be present in full screen apps, hidden on your lockscreen, have an icon shortcut in the notification tray to the app and -- last but not least -- animate the bar while your device is charging. Check or uncheck the appropriate boxes based on your preference, then scroll down for more options.

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Adjust the ChargeBar

If the blue bar isn't your color of choice, you can change the color by tapping on the color swatch.

You can also increase the width, or thickness, of the ChargeBar by changing the height setting. Keep in mind, the thicker you make the bar, the more information it can potentially cover up. The next slide has a bar with an increased height so you can get an idea of how it would look on your device.

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ChargeBar at 5

As you can see, the height of the bar has been increased to a setting of 5, making it easier to see. Going even further, we will increase the height to 20.

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ChargeBar at 20

At a setting of 20 you can see that information is starting to get covered up, taking up almost half of the top status bar. Play around with the color and size until you find a your preferred setup.

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You can also change the position of the ChargeBar. The default location is the top of your screen, with options to move it to the bottom of your screen or the bottom of the status bar up top.

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Lockscreen look

I set the bar on my device to be displayed on the bottom, and enabled it to be present on the lockscreen.

Adding a battery indicator to your Android device is just another layer of customization you can add. By using the ChargeBar, or any of the other battery indicators, you can keep a better watch on your battery's current level.

Of course, this slideshow only addresses keeping track of your battery status. For tips on extending your device's battery life, check out Nicole Cozma's set of tips in our spring cleaning series here.

For more tips on how to customize your Android phone, see our story here.

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