Reviews - February 6, 2024

Why Your Apple Watch Battery Is Draining Faster Than You Expect (and What You Can Do About It)

The Apple Watch has well-regulated background apps, but they don’t work quite the same way as the iPhone. For one thing, it doesn’t update often in the background, and WatchOS limits background app refresh for most standalone smartwatch apps. This limit is much less stringent for apps that display information on the watch face. It requires frequent updates and requires more batteries to keep the information accurate. This means fewer watch face complications, which means less battery drain.

While the Apple Watch can’t update all apps in the background, your iPhone probably does. This is generally not a problem, except that all notifications, alerts, and even phone calls are routed through the watch. The constant blinking and frequent vibration of the display can take a toll on your battery.

Luckily, Low Power Mode offers a variety of features including reducing background app refresh, limiting notifications, reducing animations, disabling Always-On Display, and more. Enable it in Settings > Battery > Low Power Mode on your Apple Watch.

However, there are many apps that can demand a lot of battery from your watch when brought to the foreground. For example, using exercise apps with location services enabled or playing games with lots of animations and vibrations will use more power on your smartwatch. If you want your battery to last longer, you should avoid these apps.