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Skype and iPhone battery life iOS devices
I was on the road for a bit the other day, and when I left home at noon, my iPhone's battery was about 95% full. About 4 hours later, I saw it was down to about 25%, and I wondered what it could have been doing to deplete the battery so much. I thought of the usual culprits, like brightness (it's not at the maximum), Bluetooth (it seems well behaved with iOS 6, going in standby mode when not in use), or push email. Then I looked at which apps were open. I quit them all, including Skype. An hour later, my battery had only dropped another 5%.

When I came home, I did some googling, thinking it could be Skype, or it could be another app. I came across a Skype forum post where someone said they lost 70% in four hours, just like me. There were no other apps running that would have been keeping a connection open, so it's safe to say - given the vast number of people who have commented on the relationship between Skype and poor battery life - that there is a link.

So, if you use Skype, and see bad battery life on your iPhone, try quitting the app and see if this improves things. I haven't done any scientific testing, but there seem to be enough people who have this problem to suggest that Skype may be the culprit.
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Skype and iPhone battery life | 10 comments | Create New Account
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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: fracai on Jan 28, '13 08:25:45AM

Skype, and any other VOIP app, is in one of the exception categories that allows it to continue to run for an extended period of time after going to the background. Others are music and navigation applications.

Specifically, Skype needs to constantly be running in order to receive incoming calls. This is still restricted by Apple to use fewer resources, but it's possible that there's a bug in Skype that causes it to drain the batter, or maybe you were in a low coverage area where Skype's constant connection caused higher than normal cellular activity.

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i am jack's amusing sig file



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: Typhoon14 on Jan 28, '13 08:30:18AM

Yes, Skype will destroy your battery. I have to leave it running during the day for work and it drives me nuts. As a VOIP app, Skype doesn't use push notifications - it's actually allowed to maintain an active background process, and apparently a particularly inefficient one.

As an aside, Skype's Android app is equally draining, if not more so.



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: BoxOfSnoo on Jan 28, '13 09:23:34AM

Oh yes Skype has been the worst battery-killer for a long time. Strange though, that something like TextPlus can handle voice calls but doesn't kill the battery nearly as much.



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: joh on Jan 28, '13 12:12:24PM

This is not new, but you can go into the settings for Skype and configure it to quit after a while. Won't help very much if you need to have it running in case someone calls you on Skype, but in this case you're just screwed.

Facetime is behaving quite perfectly here, by the way. If Apple would have really published the protocol (as promised when FT was introduced) so other apps on other systems could use it, Skype might have been more or less obsolete by now. Didn't happen though, as always Apple seems to prefer locking in their users over capturing the market.



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: Makosuke on Jan 28, '13 01:24:05PM

Skype can be a battery hog in some cases, but you can set whether it stays open (that is, maintains an ability to accept incoming calls) when it's not the active app via its preference.

It can be set to always stay open, or to shut down after a predetermined interval (for example, 15 minutes or 1 hour), or to quit instantly (which would maximize battery life, and avoid having to manually kill the app via the switcher).

Be careful, because that same delay is also used when talking over Skype and multitasking (for example, checking your email while talking); if you have it set to not maintain a connection at all, hitting the "home" button during a call will immediately hang up the call. Similarly, if you set a 15 minute delay, and then switch apps while talking, after 15 minutes your call will be dropped and Skype will quit completely.

It's honestly not a very smart system--the app or preference should distinguish between accepting incoming calls and maintaining an active call in progress. The current version also crashes all over the place when placing calls to a landline on my current-gen iPod Touch, which is fiercely annoying, but then it is a Microsoft product.

Edited on Jan 28, '13 01:24:54PM by Makosuke



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: kirkmc on Jan 28, '13 11:04:09PM

I discovered the "offline" thing recently as well. If you have it set to go offline in Settings, then it cuts you off, as mentioned above. I've been talking with someone on Skype recently a lot, and I wondered why we kept getting cut off. Now I'll set it to not go offline, and quit the app manually when I'm finished.

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Mac OS X Hints editor - Macworld senior contributor
http://www.mcelhearn.com



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: hughescr on Jan 28, '13 02:36:17PM

I've found that Facebook can be brutal too -- it seems to love leaving the GPS turned on, which causes heavy power drain too. It'd be very nice if iOS added a power drain monitor like Android has so you can see exactly what is drawing how much power.



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: Vynce on Jan 28, '13 05:19:52PM
I've had some luck using Carat to identify apps that use a lot of battery.

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Bump
Authored by: SeanAhern on Jan 30, '13 09:37:50AM

Agreed. Use Carat to get real data about your energy use. Stop guessing.



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Skype and iPhone battery life
Authored by: cora on Jan 30, '13 05:40:33AM

Known that on mac skype uses a lot of cpu I tried to disable animated icons and consumption decreases. Even if you see no icon consumption improves. This could be also on iOS? With Little Snitch always on mac traffic Skype is remarkable in each case. ciao



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