Palm Treo Battery Tip: Turning Off Auto Date/Time

April 3, 2008

Whether you’re an intrepid Treo user like me or a novice like my partner, you’ve surely noticed that the newer Treos (the 680, 755p, and Centro, among others) have wimpy batteries.  They simply don’t last all day, and my partner and I often jockey over the extra battery chargers in the kitchen and in our cars.

This becomes especially pronounced when we use battery-intensive applications on the Treo – like Chatter, Causerie or any other IM programs, and web browsers.  Fortunately, aside from carrying a charger or an extra battery with us all day, there are some things we (and you!) could do to lengthen our Treo’s battery charge throughout the day.

Here’s the tip du jour:  turn off automatic date / time settings.

See … The newer Treo’s running Palm OS (and surely Window Mobile too but I’m not familiar with these) can keep checking the phone network to get the local date and time.  Very handy for keeping your Treo’s time and date accurate to the second.   Very useful when you’ve got to catch a train every day (like me).  But this is a constant power drain on our Treo’s batteries.  Turning this feature off and setting the date / time yourself (if necessary) saves a bit of battery power throughout the day.  After all, every bit helps!

Here’s how:

  • Press the “house” button on your Treo to view a list of applications installed.
  • Select the “Prefs” application.
  • Once inside Preferences for your Treo, select “Date / Time”.
  • The first option you see will be “Automatically set:”.   The drop-down menu under that has three options:
    • Nothing
    • Date and time
    • Date, time and time zone
  • Set this setting to “Nothing.”
  • Under “Manually set:”, make sure your location, date, and time are correct.  If the location isn’t correct, either select a city near you in the same time zone or scroll down to the bottom of the Location list and select “Edit list …”
  • Press “Done”

Ta-da!  You’re on the way toward saving a bit of battery power per day.  This may not be enough to keep you going all day without re-charging, but every little bit helps – especially in these eco-conscious days.

Stay tuned for more battery power tips!

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