How to see which apps are draining your phone’s battery the most

When comparing battery life, the best budget phones on Android can’t hold a charge like the newest ones on the market. With third-party apps sapping away at your device’s battery life, you need a way to slow down and monitor your battery’s consumption in the background. To combat this battery drain, we put together this guide showing you how to find the mobile apps that are draining your battery.

How to check for battery-draining apps on Android

Most phones have graphical data or lists that display every app that’s used your battery within a specific period. Below, we show some examples of how to find these graphs and data.

How to find your battery usage on Samsung

Navigating the battery settings from Battery and device care shows a list of Android apps and their associated battery-use percentage (since the last full charge) within a period. In this example, we use a Samsung Galaxy S23 operating Android 13. You can use these steps with any Samsung device. ​​​​​

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Battery and device care.
  3. Tap Battery.
  4. Select the View details button.
  5. Tap the list of apps below the Battery usage graph.

You can view a graph depicting apps used since the last full charge or seven days. Tapping Last seven days displays the battery consumption data from 12 am to 12 pm for each day in the seven-day period. The pastel pink in the graph shows when the device was charging, and the salmon pink shows when apps used the battery.

Enlarged battery usage graph on a Samsung Galaxy S23 displayed in landscape mode

A plateau in the graph shows consistent battery usage. If you see an unusual dip, it might signal that a recent app’s update or installation might be behaving abnormally on your phone, but in most cases, it’s tied to activity.

The Battery usage graph does not record app usage while charging.

How to find your battery usage on Google Pixel

You can set three battery-use options (unrestricted, optimized, and restricted) with any app installed on your Google Pixel. Below, we show you how to find these customizable battery settings. In this example, we performed the steps using a Google Pixel 7 on Android 13.

  1. Open Settings > Battery.
  2. Tap Battery usage.
  3. Tap any app below App usage since last full charge.
  4. Check the selected battery usage option for the listed app.

How to check for battery-draining apps on iPhone

Apple also has a built-in function to view battery usage by app. We outline the steps on how to get there. We used an iPhone 11 (on iOS 16), but iPhone 8 and later also have this feature.

  1. Open Settings > Battery.
  2. Tap Battery usage by app.
  3. Tap Show activity.

It’s a common myth that apps running in the background are the reason your battery looks worse for wear. That’s not true. Most of the apps are not actually “running” in the background. They become suspended after closing (moving away from the app) or after completing tasks (such as syncing). It takes more energy from your iPhone to load up the app than to resume or unsuspend it.

How to save your battery on mobile

Slowing down battery consumption might be the key to getting through your day. So it’s time to take matters into your hands by activating low-power mode and force-stopping some apps from running rogue on your Android phone. See below to get started.

How to force stop an app

Third-party apps running in the background (constantly) will deter your battery. Sometimes, those apps are not well-optimized for phones. If you’re continually force-closing an app to avoid battery drain, consider uninstalling those apps. Below, we show you how to force stop an app as a temporary measure to ensure your device remains in shape.

  1. Open Settings and scroll down to Apps.
  2. Select an app.
  3. Tap Force stop.
  4. Tap OK.

If nothing changes and force-stopping an app doesn’t prevent the app from reaching double-digit numbers (with respect to battery consumption) on your phone, do a fresh restart. When all else fails, it may be time to retire that app and report this issue to the developer.

Activating low power mode or power-saving mode

Running your device on power-saving mode should be a last resort when trying to save your battery. Turning on this mode reduces the power your device needs to run. This includes closing apps, turning off certain functions (like GPS and background syncing), and reducing your phone’s brightness. You’ll lose performance and activity, but in exchange, you can extend your battery’s life until you can charge it.

To turn on power-saving mode, open Settings > Battery and device care > Battery, then toggle on Power saving.

Fixing a device’s battery health

Monitoring how apps affect your phone’s battery is only one step of the way. After you’ve discovered which apps are the culprits, it’s time to take action. Most phones include flexible options to maintain your battery. Whether you’re turning on power-saving mode with Bixby Routines or digging into more intricate settings with app usage and battery, there are many solutions to this ongoing problem. It’s just a matter of finding the right one for you.