iPhone 3.0 Battery Draining? Here’s a Possible Fix



All the goodness of iPhone OS 3.0 aside, the one thing you’ve probably noticed after updating your iPhone or iPod touch is how quickly its battery is draining.

I certainly did, along with many other users. The battery life of my iPhone 3G is now barely six hours, a huge departure from the 12+ hours or so I would get with 2.2.1. And even though I’d experienced a decrease in battery life with the beta builds of 3.0 back in May, the battery never drained at a rate as alarming as this. Now, it depletes 10 percent every hour even while the phone is left doing absolutely nothing.

My first thought was that push notification must be the cause of this. But even after turning off push notification, the battery continued to drain at an alarming rate. After some investigation, it would seem that the culprit is, instead, iPhone’s push mail setting.

To turn off push for all mail accounts, follow these steps:

  1. On the Home screen, tap the “Settings” icon.
    iPhone Settings Step 1
  2. Tap “Mail, Contacts, Calendars.”
    iPhone Settings Step 2
  3. Tap “Fetch New Data.”
  4. Turn off “Push.” This turns off push, in one step, for all email accounts that are enabled for it, while preserving the “Fetch” settings you may have already set for every account.
  5. Reboot your iPhone. To do that, hold down the Sleep/Wake button (the one at the top) until you see the red slider appear, then drag the slider.
    iPhone Sleep Wake Button

After your iPhone has restarted, you should see an improvement in its battery life. Leave a comment, and tell us if this works for you!



Disabling Push, etc didn’t seem to work for me.

I ran a few tests and for me its definitely related to the email application.

If I open it in the morning to check my email, then do regular activity with my phone, by noon my phone is dead.

I rebooted the phone and did not open the email application in the morning and did my regular daily activities, listening to music for the entire morning, a few calls, etc, by noon my phone is still at full charge.

My solution for now is to view my mail (gmail) through the browser, but it would be nice to have it fixed.

Other solutions I’ve heard include using a 3rd party mail app, killing the mail process with SBSettings (Jailbreak only) or clearing the iPhones memory by going to the slide to power off screen and holding home for 6 seconds.


I had the same issue and decided to download a different copy of the 3.0 firmware and restore my iphone. I have a 2G 8GB iphone. After installing and then Jailbreakunlock with redsn0w-win_0.7.1 and Pwnage, I immediately update cydia (which was crashing often when I first did the 3.0 update) using update essentials. I didn’t install any apps at this point. just ran the iphone some to see if the battery would drain. So far so good. I went ahead and did my back up restore. Ran some of the apps, and verified my settings were back. Battery still at 100%. Its been running at 100% for about 3hours. I don’t use it much, mostly on standby. I want to believe that the firmware i originally downloaded was the culprit. I still notice some lag time when I hit the home button to close an application. But the battery is not running down quickly anymore. So if you decide to reinstall download another copy of the firmware from a different source.


Doing a ‘clean install’ of 3.0 fixed these issues for me.

Had to re-populate my iphone’s music, programs and settings afterward, but it was worth the effort to fix the battery drain issue.

Actually, getting rid of a bunch of unused apps was nice too.

I read somewhere that some *old* settings were not properly overwritten when upgrading, and a clean install fixes that. Don’t know, but I can vouch that a clean install of 3.0 fixed my issues.


I thanked the staff for this fix. Previously, my phone’s battery was draining very quickly. When the phone was near any speakers, I can hear it transmitting continuously, possibly trying to fetch data. Tried resetting, restoring etc but to no avail. I even had trying to receive call while this is happening. Tried this fix and it stopped transmitting. Thanks again.


The battery on iPhone 3G has been draining very fast; the phone is warm and you could feel the battery drain by touching it and how warm the phone is. Interestingly, the phone always shows Usage and Standby exactly same, meaning the phone is in use even when it is kept in standby. I have seen this problem only for the past 3 days, since 1st or 2nd July. I tried resetting it, restarting, disabled push and changed to Fetch 1 hour but nothing seems to help. Worse, it takes infinitely long (several hours) to fully charge it through AC adapter and takes even longer through computer, which indicates the battery is drained while being charged.


Have the same issue since 2 days ago.. ANY FIX. Once I take out the sim it works fine, otherwise CPU idle is less than 40… HEEELLLPP


Same here. I thought I was the only one, but I´m reading the same symptoms everywhere.

Wifi, push,.. everything disabled, and I found that my phone is off. I left it charging all night, but…


I thought it was this, so i did do what you said, but still my batter is draining at an alarming rate. i thought that if i deleted some of my applications it may help… it didnt make no difference. im thinking that its probably because of the updates.


The problem is that Apple made the phone a little smaller but slipped in a battery that is 15% smaller. The answer given by Apple is relatively absurd. All of those suggestions will raise battery life but remove the utility of why you bought the phone. Why is it that the Blackberry on any network can last far longer with push services? Perhaps the next suggestion will be “stop talking, you already blab more than is necessary.” The battery life is a real problem and shouldn’t have been released as is. The only available applications that even help with this problem apparently are available only if you “jailbreak” your phone from Apple control and which voids your warranty. It’s a problem, unfortunately, and the battery needs to be replaced for something more power – another item that Applecare and design doesn’t allow you to do.


I am noticing erratic battery behavior and it is not lasting as long as it used to before 3.0… for example last night I was on the phone with 70% battery left then boom phone shuts off, battery is dead. Sometimes when charging it will say its charged and I know its not, then will say its charging.

I hope 3.1 fixes this… I feel like I need to be connected to an outlet at all times just in case.


Hi everybody.. I’d like to add smth over here, I guess it’s said but anyway.
I have been using 2.x for long time and no battery issue.. it was jailbroken and used yellowsn0w worked perfect. So I wanted to update it, I have downloaded the .ipsw file from this site and the redsn0w aswell, jailbreaking and ultrasn0wing worked fine, but battery life decreased.
What I did is, download the offical .IPSW file from itunes 8.2 then used that .ipsw file with redsn0w, now it works like charm.. I guess you people all have to do the same just get the offical ipsw from itunes then jailbreak it with redsn0w.
i have everything on .. wifi, edge, push and so on, and iphone doesn’t heat up as it used to do before, btw I had to lose all data.
Take care every1 hope it helps u out.

Clayton Lai

I think Sally B is on to something.

What I did prior to writing this article was updating to the 3.0 GM from 3.0 Beta 5 (and, before that, Beta 4, Beta 3, Beta 2…). The key thing to note is that, after installing the very first 3.0 Beta, I had restored from a jailbroken 2.2.1 backup. I suspected this could be the problem.

Over the weekend, I restored my iPhone 3G six times in a variety of scenarios to see if I could arrive at some pattern to support my observation above. I also jailbroke 3.0, as I’ve been hearing other users say that also drains the battery.

The gist of my findings is that if I update to 3.0, and then restore from a jailbroken 3.0 backup, the battery will drain quickly. Jailbreaking a clean 3.0 installation will also result in the battery draining. Turning off both push email and push notification helped stem the battery drain, so there seems to be an issue with how a jailbroken iPhone is communicating with APNS. The iPhone Dev Team is currently investigating this matter.

If I set up my iPhone 3G as a new phone (i.e., not restoring from any backup), the battery drain problem goes away.

But, having said that, having push notification turned on does make quite a difference between battery life under 3.0 and the sort of battery life I was accustomed to under 2.2.1.

So, what I’m really curious now is: How many of you who are facing this battery problem restored from a backup of a jailbroken installation?

Lastly, since battery life in 2.x never took a hit like this even when restoring from a jailbroken backup, I am as surprised as any one else may be that this is unfortunately happening under 3.0.


Yes, i installed a clean 3.0 and setup everything as new… iPhone working all good.. I miss some of the app when jailbreak, so i jailbreak my 3.0 and it is then that my battery drain started… wifi, btooth, push, notification off…


I have this problem of missing calls, text messages and my iphone constantly transmitting when push is activated;

As I indeed restored from a backup of a jailbroken installation, I tried a clean full restore.

Unfortunately that didn’t work.
My new iphone is not jailbroken whatsoever [jailbroken backup was from my other iphone], so I was wondering if my mobile me account and all the data on the mobile me server is corrupting my clean 3.0 installation when I sync it.

or is this too far fetched?


Hi Guys,

I’ve just figured out why my battery draining so fast, it’s winterboard app, it’s too buggy on 3.0 firmware and draining battery a lot… So try to remove this app and wait for new stable version, also i have bunch of other issues with this app.


Clayton Lai

I don’t think it’s WinterBoard because it wasn’t in my jailbroken 3.0, and yet the battery was merrily draining away.


Just want to add some more data points.

My upgrade process was:
1. Download the newest ipsw file from Apple
2. Restore the phone via iTunes using the new ipsw
3. Install redsn0w
4. Installed ultrasn0w
5. Restored the iphone from old backup.

My settings are:
1. 3G and WiFi enabled
2. Bluetooth and Edge turned off
3. Push disabled

First after the upgrade, I did enable push but saw a really dramatic battery drain. Then I disabled push and restarted the phone. Battery life is now excellent, better than before.

Looking at the usage today, it’s been in stand-by 8h42min and used 1h39min since it was last fully charged. The battery still shows 74% (I just rebooted the phone to make sure it wasn’t just the meeter being stuck). I can’t back it up with any data, but I think it’s an improvement compared to 2.2.


Sally B. nailed it on the head. I restored the phone but DID NOT restore from a previous backup (lost everything) to eliminate the egregious battery life produced from upgrading to 3.0.

If you want to fix the battery problem, you’ll have to lose a lot of preferences and reinstall your old apps, but it is worth it. No problems battery problems now (but there are still other bugs I’ve noticed).


-3G: ON
-Localisation: OFF
-Luminosité à moitié avec réglage automatique: ON
-Tout le reste, paramétrage usine

Durant ce test, toujours connecté en 3G avec 5 barres:

—> 100%

le 30/06:
15h05: 1 sms envoyé
15h05-15h20: Facebook (15min) —> 97%
15h20-15h23: Relevé de courrier sur 1 compte (3min) —>96%
15h23-15h27: Safari (5min) —> 93%
15h27-16h05: Tv d’Orange avec pas mal de zapping + son a fond (via haut parleurs) (40min) —> 72%
16h05-17h20: Veille (75min) —>71%
17h20-17h25: Un appel (5min) —>71%
17h25-17h47: Veille (22min) —>69%
17h47-17h50: Facebook (3min)—>69%
17h50-23h20: Veille (5h30) —>67%
23h22-23h56: Appel (32min) + les sims pour essayer lors d’un appel (5min) —>56%
23h56-00h25: Veille (29min) —>55%

le 01/07:
00h25- 00h30: Envoi 5 sms (5min) —>54%
00h30-12h44: Veille (12h14) —>50%
12h44-12h48: 2 sms (4min) —>48%
12h48-13h33: Veille (45min) —>48%
13h33-13h50: Tv d’Orange (17min) —> 42%
13h50-13h52: Envoi 2 sms (2min) —>41%
13h52-13h54: Relevé de courrier sur 2 comptes (2min) —> 41%
13h54-13h56: Facebook (2min) —>40%
13h56-14h17: Veille (21min) —> 39%
14h17-15h16: iPod + écouteurs (playlist donc écran éteint sans changement de musique) (59min) —>36%
15h20-15h25: Visionnage d’un clip vidéo (5min) —>33%
15h26-16h02: Safari + iPod avec pas mal de changement de musique (toujours via casque audio) (36min)


Temps de veille total: 1256 min soit 20h56min
Temps d’utilisation total: 235min soit 3h55min

Voilà voilà mon test, qu’est-ce que vous pensez de l’autonomie, ça me semble bof quand même…


Just for the record, I have also faced significant degradation of my iPhone 3G battery life after the 3.0 update.
Of course, by using it exactly the same way I do every single day!
Let’s hope the 3.1 update will address this issue.


Justin M

I had greatly diminished battery life after switching to a refurb phone from Apple. I noticed that my ‘Usage’ time was identical to my ‘Stand By’ time which should never be the case unless you never let your phone lock. Anyway, it seems that something gets hung up in a connection to the network and the phone will stay active even after the screen turns off.

Surprisingly, I stumbled across what seems to be a fix, but I have not run extensive enough tests to prove this theory.

Fix: While your phone is turned on, pop out the sim card tray so that your phone says ‘No Sim’ and then just put it back in (if this does not work, try removing the sim while the phone is on and then rebooting without the sim. Replace the sim after the phone has completed rebooted). This has fixed my constant ‘Usage’ problem, but as I said, I discovered this fix like 5 hours ago and I have not been able to extensively test to see if the problem will return.

The good news is iPhone OS 3.1 was released as beta today so maybe, just maybe this is a software issue that will be fixed in the 3.1 patch.



Justin, you’re the man! Thanks very much for sharing your fix. For my particular problem, your idea not only worked perfectly, but was by far the easiest solution.
Something obviously got hung up and loopy and your diagnosis was right on the money because my usage time and standby time were identical.
Thanks again.


I had the same problem with my battery as well. The fix was simple. All you have do is do a hard reset. Then let your battery drain completly(until the phone dies) then recharge completly.That’s it. I’ve had no trouble what so ever since. Good luck!!!!


I also having problems on recieving a call, and it happened just after upgrading to 3.0,
can you help me on that,
you are more than welcomed to send me a private email,




I noticed apps (like facebook, mail, etc) that keep running in the background are causing this battery draining. After some reading, I found out that from 3.0 on, you’ll have to hold the power-button until the red slider appears, then hold the “home”-button, to force-quit apps… This solves the drain issue for me.


since installing 3.0 on my 3G battery life has dropped significantly (by more than 50%) and wifi no longer works (access points appear the first time after a reboot and then disappear once i try a connection). Tried a factory reset to no avail, as it won’t go back to os 2. Only thing it fixed is wake time, took 5 seconds to see a reaction upon pressing the button, now it is almost back to normal.

I am very disappointed by apple, if you give people access to only limited settings you need to be flawless. If this isn’t fixed quickly, my next phone will be android.

Craig Kuehne

Like many others in this post, I found battery life to be increased after installing 3.0, as well as a speed-up in certain situations…


Has anyone else noticed a marked decrease in overall speed with the 3.0 update? I almost want the last OS back because everything has slowed down so much.

George Hawkins

My iPhone is on order thru AT&T store 20 miles away. If I am in wrong place, tell me, please. AT Apple Store 65 miles away, I was unable to buy a phone! I started the “buy” on line; system got to point of you now have authorization to buy and save, you need to go to nearest Apple Store. I got there, and they said this does NOT indicate my name is in the system. THEY start in same procedure I started, and got to same point. BOTTOM line is so stupid: they are unable to finish the purchase procedure (I did not care if I walked out with a phone or not), BUT they were unable to purchase and save or ship direct to me.
I wasted 175 miles and the time involved!
It’s so difficult and round about to speak to anyone who has concern. All the phones are automated.


I am having difficulty understanding how this is related at all to the issue at hand.


Word of advice….if you cant find an iPhone 3Gs anywhere….Go to Walmart and buy it. Thats where I got my 3Gs. And i bet you they wont be out of stock.

Before that, I went to Apple, they were sold out but only had the 32GB. Went to AT&T and they were sold out. Went to Best Buy, they were sold out. I asked all those places each time if they knew somewhere else i could get it, and they all told me that they were sold out everywhere in the city (im in San Antonio) and that i would have to order onliine (and wait like 10 days) or just wait till they got a shipment (which they said they are never told when they are gonna come in)

Anyways, i decided to try my luck and walked into good old wally world, and they had that sh*t stocked up the a**. loool. It makes sense tho, walmart, unlike apple, actually knows a little something about supply chain management and managing inventories. Plus, i saved $2 hahha. suck it apple lol


I’ve found that it’s bad apps that keep running. I think it’s either Facebook or Tweetie that’s the culprit. Anyone else?


I have no apps installed, only the ones supplied by Apple …


That’s what the tech told me (AT&T, BTW why in the world is an AT&T tech guy on an apple phone line?!), bad third party apps could be draining my battery. Bullshit. Same problem, my battery dies quickly even while on stand by and jumps around from 92 to 94 to 88. Even 22 to 33 to 44 back down to 20, in a matter of minutes! I talked to an actual Apple tech today and he said that couldn’t be the problem and told me to restore from a new phone rather than back up. I’m testing that out now, i’ll see how that works.


This is not really new ….

I am on my 3rd iPod touch 1G and it still drains completely full battery with WiFi, Location services and Push completely off! Apple’s position is completely ridiculous on this (they are determined to keep giving me a new one 1G until it works …. LOL). Last time they suggested I invest another 10 bucks into 3.0 OS …. I laughed and said never again am I paying for any iPod, iPhone family product. Oh, another Apple’s suggestion was to turn the unit off (instead of using sleep button …) every time I am done using it ….. I thought they were joking, but the tech was actually serious.

I have nothing against Apple, but some of their thinking a problem solving is hard to believe.


I am getting an even weirder issue. My battery shows full up after a full day — I plug it in and it shows that it is full — and it can’t be. An hour later, it is at 20%. Any suggestions?

Also, how are you knowing % of drain? can we see % on the battery bar — if so, how do I set it?

Thanks — from a basically non-techie!

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