iPhone SE 2020 battery life isn't good

Hardware & Accessories

I have an iPhone SE 2020. I get a day if I'm lucky. I also have a Pixel2 that I have used for the last month. I use it the same way as my iPhone. This was purchased new. It was in a ware house for 3 years. It gets 1 day 13 hours on average. This isn't acceptable. I also think Apple would be smart to have a separate accessibility volume like on android. Is there a way to get longer than bearly a day out of the iPhone SE 2020?



Submitted by BigPawedBear on Monday, August 17, 2020

update the ios version to latest one, then go check the battery health. settings, battery, battery health button, then in there will be an estimate of the battery's health. talk to apple, and they will do diagnostics remotely to check if the battery is okay. no, 13 hours is not right for an iphone SE. yes there is an accessbility volume, rotor to volume and flick up and down. if it's not there, go accessibility, then voiceover, roter, and add volume to the options.

Submitted by Dennis Long on Monday, August 17, 2020

It says the Battery is fine 100% . I did call apple support they were supposed to follow up with me and never did. As for an accessibility volume let me exband on that. On Android you can make the screen reader volume louder than other things. You can't do that on iOS.

Submitted by burak on Monday, August 17, 2020

Turn auto brightness off in settings/accessibility/display and text font
Then lower brightness to 0% by going to control center/setting down brightness slider to zero.

Submitted by burak on Monday, August 17, 2020

Turn off bluetooth by going to settings/bluetooth. Turning it off from control center will not cause an increase in battery life.
If you don't use it, turn off celular data from control center.

Submitted by Adaria on Monday, August 17, 2020

I see one glaring problem between your comparisons of battery usage.

The iPhone SE 2020 has a 1,821mAh battery while the Pixel 2 has a 2700MAh battery capacity. If the Pixel 2 was stored properly the age of the battery shouldn't have been impacted much but that is still a significant difference in battery capacities which easily explains the discrepancy between the two devices.

They are also running two completely different operating systems with different background processes and needs so it makes it difficult to really compare them equally, I think the battery capacity difference is probably where your problem is, though.

Submitted by Joe on Monday, August 17, 2020

Club AppleVis Member

The iPhone 8 battery wasn't that good to begin with and that's what you have there. To see good battery life on a iPhone your going to need the XR 11 or 11 pro series they made great improvements there. Hope this doesn't come out or across mean but you got the cheapest phone Apple makes and they cut back on battery.

Submitted by Justin Harris on Monday, August 17, 2020

I'm surprised you can even get a whole day out of the SE. Don't get me wrong, I have this same phone, and absolutely love it, but if I didn't have my battery case, I would be in all kinds of trouble. My day starts most of the time at 4:00 a.m, and a lot of the time, by noon, maybe 2:00 at the latest, I have to charge up again. But with this case, I can just press a button, and the case does the job. Only downside is that it makes the phone lots thicker, but for me a reasonable price to pay.
Also, it depends on your use case. I'm on my phone all the time.
It would be interesting to know what kind of battery life sighted people get. I have always suspected that VoiceOver causes a lot of battery drain, more so than what a sighted user would experience from just screen on time, but have never done any kind of testing to find out. Just my guess.
But if you find yourself needing to charge up during the day, go on amazon and grab a battery case. They range from $25 to $40. For me it's a real life saver.

Submitted by Joe on Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Club AppleVis Member

Well as someone stated the battery on your phone is small so your options are to stay on Android with your bigger battery or pay to play. To be fair your Pixel 2 in its prime was a flagship phone also.

Submitted by KE7ZUM on Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Agreed. The higheer the number for the miliamp hours, the longer yoru battery will last. You will have to pay maybe 600 or so to buy a good phone. My battery is lasting about a day, or at least the length of a work day. I am done, I just plug in when I'm back home and sleep.

Submitted by tripolice on Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Privacy, location, system services. Turn all off maybe except emergency sos and find my iphone. Don't worry about some warning messages, there shouldn't be any issues. Also, turn off iphone analytics from privacy settings if it's on. done, you should notice battery not going down at least when the phone is not used. When used, the drain will be there. Also, don't expect results immediately after turning the services off It starts working after the next full charge. Do let us know the results.

Also, if by chance voice control is on, turn it off if you're not using it.

Submitted by Joe on Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Club AppleVis Member

You could try limiting notifications. Not sure on your set up, but only receive notifications from apps that are the most important to you. I have a friend who has apps notify him all the time limiting how much his screen is off and it is super annoying to hear. This might help you if you don't already do this.

Submitted by Mister Kayne on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Well this should work for any IOS version or phone model. They are general settings of things you should do if you want more out of that battery in a day. If you have done all there is in these tips, look for more videos that can help you. Leaving data on; will kill your battery faster than you think

Submitted by That Blind Canuck on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

You might also want to turn on "Reduce Motion" under Settings>Accessibility>Motion and "Reduce Transparency" under Settings>Accessibility>Display and Text Size. Another thing you could do is under Notifications, for each app that you've set to notify, disable the "Allow on Lock Screen". Granted if you're one of those who want them to appear on your lock screen, then you can skip this one, but if you don't care, you can disable this as each time you get a new notification, it wakes up your screen. You'll still hear the sound though, you just won't have your phone waking up each time.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Set apps to manual, also set mail to manual push instead of checking automatic, I did heard that the battery of it was not that great when it came out. Lucky for me I have 11 pro max and I do not need to charge my battery until the next day. I heard that 12 pro is also good regarding battery due to the new chip. I am getting it and give my iPhone to a nice lady.

Submitted by Dennis Long on Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Hi, is there a way to turn off all notifications from appearing on the lock screen at once? what will turning on "Reduce Motion" "Reduce Transparency" do? Thanks for your help.

Submitted by VjOuttaSight on Thursday, September 3, 2020

I have found The 2 things that drain the battery the most are:
1. WiFi Assist. Even if you think you are on WiFi, if the signal is not strong, WifI Assist will automatically use cellular data to boost signal. Turn it off under Settings, Cellular, near the bottom.
2. WiFi Auto Network Search. Your phone is constantly scanning for WiFi networks. Turn this off under Settings, WiFi. Ask to Join Networks to OFF.
While you are there, also set Auto Join Hot Spots to NEVER.
These 2 things will extend battery life significantly.

Submitted by Travis Roth on Thursday, September 3, 2020

Club AppleVis Member

Lot of good tips in these comments. For me, the iPhone SE 2020 worked fine for a while, then suddenly one day it started draining the battery at up to 10% per hour. After much testing of turning things off including background app refresh, resetting settings, and so forth, I have found that WiFi itself is the problem. When I am not using a lot of data, i turn WiFi off entirely, and this keeps the phone charged. This runs counter to normal power theory where WiFi uses far less power than cellular. All I can assume is at least with my handset there is a software bug that is causing the phone to continually access data when on WiFi although I cannot find which app, or some WiFi chip problem. I have no idea and it is beyond annoying. But working for me for the moment. I like the form factor of iPhone SE but the battery experience is certainly disappointing.

Hi Travis,

I recently got myself an IPHONE SE 2020 and have been experiencing appr 10% per hour battery drain. Since last two days I am also using it on mobile data instead of wifi unless I need to update my apps And guess what , like you mentioned , even I am experiencing some battery improvement. This does seem strange and contrary to popular belief.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Monday, September 7, 2020

In reply to by Adi

If you turn off WIFI, you will not be able to see your watch or change faces in your phone or make any changes within the phone to the watch.

Submitted by Adi on Tuesday, September 8, 2020

In reply to by Holger Fiallo


Oh, was not aware of that. Anyway currently do not have one. Let us see how the series 6 turns out. And now there are speculations of Apple watch SE coming out.Guess, wait and watch is the medicine for me.

Submitted by Oliver Kennett on Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Turn off your phone completely. If you do have to have it on, don't interact with it in any way, don't even look at it. This will maximises your battery.

I agree with OP, all apple needs to do is drop this obsession with thin phones and give a decent battery. We pay more than equilivant android phones and we should not have to optimise battery by losing features.

Yes, you could go with another phone but, what I'm saying is, this is a flaw in apple's design. Again and again the top request for iPhones is to have better battery life but, with typical Apple arrogance, they think they know what we want before we do.

Yes, last year's phones did improve on battery but it is looking like this year they will be taking another step back and, as for the 5.4 inch phone, well, I think it will be a comparable battery to the SE. That's the one I'm most interested in as I simply don't need a big screen. There may be some clever battery saving aspects under the hood, more efficient display, better energy consumption on the A14 chip, but I doubt it. If you go apple, you are pretty much tied to a charger. I don't see that changing.

Submitted by Holger Fiallo on Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Check youtube for tips to save battery. also AppleVis has tips on saving battery.

Submitted by PaulMartz on Thursday, December 17, 2020

Member of the AppleVis Blog Team

When I turn on Optimize Battery Charging, my iPhone SE 2020 drains at about 4% to 5% per hour even when the phone is idle. If I turn this setting off, battery drain is negligible. Anyone else seeing this?

I'll upgrade to 14.3 and hope for a fix.

Upgrading to iOS 14.3 seems to have helped. My iPhone SE 2020 battery lost only 8% overnight with Optimize Battery Charging enabled, that's about a 1% loss per hour. However, with this feature disabled, battery drain is negligible. I think there's still room for improvement and hope Apple continues to work on it.