What's the difference between the latest $300 smart phone with one bar of power and a brick? Easy: One little bar of power. Sure, the market is flush with great Android handsets. But that flushness has come with a wave of opinions, polls and flat-out rants about their apparent lack of battery life. The PowerMax app aims to maximize your time between recharging.
If you're a DIY'er, you've probably already figured out how to manually tweak your settings. PowerMax is more for folks who just want to flip a single switch and have it work its energy efficient magic. It mainly turns off juice-sucking radios such as GPS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and 4G when you're not using them. (When you need to turn them on, that overrides the widget.) That — along with nixing screen animations you couldn't otherwise control and managing brightness — is estimated to extend your battery's life by 20 to 100 percent. PowerMax doesn't actively monitor and change your configuration, because…well, that drains the battery! The trial version lasts 10 uses or three days, whichever's longer. After that, you can pay to keep the full four-mode version or continue to pay nothing and drop down to Low mode — which zaps unused Wi-Fi and is still better than the standard Android default setting.