If your iPad Pro battery life isn't cutting it, here's how to troubleshoot!
The iPad Pro isn't just the biggest and most powerful tablet Apple's ever made, it's one of the most power efficient. That includes the new A9X chipsets and the variable refresh rate in the 12.9-inch display. Combined, Apple promises the same 10 hour battery life of every iPad that's come before. But if you're not getting that, if your iPad Pro isn't lasting as long as you need it to, here's what you can do about it!
- Don't have an iPad Pro? Check out how to troubleshoot battery life on iOS 9 instead!
1. The waiting game
Whether you restore from backup or set up as new, your new iPad Pro can gobble up a lot of radio and processor time for downloading and indexing all your data. That doesn't just include iCloud contact, mail, and calendar information and iTunes content and apps anymore either. It can include iCloud Music Library and iCloud Photo Library.
If you've just upgraded give things a day or two to finish up and calm down. If you're fine after that, great. If not, keep reading!
2. Standby... on standby
New things are shiny and we want to play with them. That's true with giant 12.9-inch displays, Smart Keyboards, Apple Pencils... Apple Pencils!... and more. And if you're playing with new features, the screen is lit up, the radios are broadcasting, and power is draining. In other words, if you're battery feels like it's only lasting half as long, the first step to fixing it is figuring out if you're using it twice as much.
So, note down how much battery life you have left. Then put your iPad Pro down for half an hour or so. When you pick it back up, note down how much battery life you have left again. If there isn't a big change while in standby, you're probably okay, and your battery life will return to normal when your usage returns to normal (after the novelty wears off).
If your device continued to drain and drain fast, even when you weren't using it, keep reading!
3. Reboot, reset
Restarting is super simple. You literally turn your iPad off and back on again. It may sound silly, but it if processes have gone rogue or the system is slugging, it can be just what you need to knock all the bits back into place.
- Press and hold down the On/Off button on the top of your iPad for 3 seconds.
- Swipe the slide to power off confirmation slider to the right.
f a regular power cycle doesn't help, you can escalate to full-on reset. Instead of gently turning your iPad off and then on again, you reboot it immediately, hoping it gets shocked back into normal functionality.
- Press and hold down the On/Off button on the top of your iPad.
- Press and hold down the Home button on the front of your iPad while still holding down the On/Off button.
- Keep holding both buttons as the screen turns off keep holding both buttons until the turns back on again and displays the Apple logo.
Once your iPad Pro has rebooted, repeat the previous step and see if battery has returned to normal. If not, keep reading!
4. Check usage
iOS 9 contains even better battery usage — aka battery shaming — for the iPad Pro. It's Located in the Settings > Battery section and tells you which apps and system services are using power, how much, and whether they're in the foreground or background. If you see iCloud Photo Library there, and you've just upgraded, it's a sign you're downloading thumbnails and things should return to normal when you're done. If you see Facebook there, it's only be on-screen for 15 minutes, but it's been in background for hours... you may have a problem. Try force quitting it (double click the Home button and flick it up and away), and even deleting and re-installing it.
5. Restore as new
The single biggest cause of battery life problems is restoring from backup and not setting up as a new iPad. Yes, setting up as a new iPad is a pain but, if you have significant problems that nothing else can fix, setting up as new can also be the solution. It's the nuclear option, no doubt about it. You will have to set up absolutely everything again, and you will lose all your saved data like game levels, but in most cases your battery life will be better than ever.
6. Contact Apple
Every once and a while you get a lemon. Like any electronics, radios and other components can have problems. If you just bought your new iPad Pro, you have AppleCare, and you should absolutely book a Genius Bar appointment and avail yourself of it.
If you don't live close to an Apple Store, you can call 1-800-MY-APPLE in order to set up a mail-in repair.
7. Extending battery life
If your battery life is normal but you want to get even more out of it, there are some switches you can pull to make power last as long as possible.
- Turn down screen brightness. The iPad Pro's massive 12.9-inch display takes a lot of power to light up. If you turn the brightness all the way up, it'll take so much power you'll be able to watch the battery drain. So, to save power, turn your screen brightness down as low as you can stand. That way it'll last as long as possible.
- Turn off Background app and content refresh: Background Refresh does everything it can to coalesce and schedule downloads to minimize battery drain. However, any background download will use battery. If you need power more than you need fresh content, go to Settings, General, Background App Refresh shows you everything you can turn off. Also go to Settings, App Store and turn of automatic app and content downloads. Here's how to turn off Background Refresh
- Turn off Lock screen notifications. If you don't need Lock screen notifications, go into Settings > Notifications, and turn them off. That'll stop the display from lighting up whenever one comes in.
- Check your cell signal. If you have an LTE iPad but are in an area of weak signal, or at the edge of LTE or 3G support, your radio could be screaming away on full power just trying to stay on the network, or switching between connection types, and wasting a lot of power. Good LTE signal is more power efficient than good 3G signal (because the radio can fire up, do its job, and power down much, much quicker), but bad LTE signal is just as bad as bad 3G, which is terrible. If you're at the edge of LTE, switch to 3G. If you're almost off the grid, turn the radio off unless and until you need it.
8. More tips!
If any of these power-saving tips worked for you, let me know! If you've got any tips of your own, let me know that too!