Skip to main content

Dark Mode in iOS 13 proven to extend battery life of OLED iPhones

The launch of iOS 13 last month finally enabled Dark Mode for Apple’s mobile operating system, and a battery test proved that activating the feature extends the life of iPhones with OLED Displays.

Activating Dark Mode switches out the iPhone’s background for a darker version, with darker highlights for the display. iPhone owners are allowed to set the feature to activate at specific times of the day, but they can also choose to have it turned on permanently.

Related Videos

A test carried out by YouTube channel PhoneBuff, however, gives iPhone owners on iOS 13 a reason to always have Dark Mode activated on their devices.

Dark Mode vs. Light Mode Battery Test

The test used a fully-charged iPhone XS and a robotic arm, which was programmed to do various things on the display while the device was in Light Mode and in Dark Mode. The tasks included typing text on the Messages app, scrolling through Twitter, playing videos on YouTube, and accessing Google Maps.

By the time that the battery of the iPhone XS in Light Mode was depleted, the iPhone XS in Dark Mode still had 30% of its charge remaining. The test was conducted with both screens at a brightness of 200 nits, and iPhones on different brightness levels may lead to different outcomes in terms of percentage — though a longer battery life for an iPhone in Dark Mode should stay true.

Black on an OLED screen means that the pixel is powered off. With more pixels deactivated in Dark Mode compared to Light Mode, this results in improved battery efficiency. In comparison, iPhones with LCD screens, such as the iPhone 11, still have their pixels turned on when showing black, so they are not able to enjoy longer battery life when on Dark Mode.

To activate Dark Mode on iPhones that have been upgraded to iOS 13, users will simply have to access the Settings app and enter the Display & Brightness menu. The option to permanently switch to Dark Mode is under the Appearance header, but for users who would like to only activate the feature at certain times of the day, the Automatic toggle will set it up. There are also some iOS 13 wallpapers that react when Dark Mode is activated.

Editors' Recommendations

5 things we’d love to see at Google I/O 2023 (but probably won’t)
Google Pixel Watch on a wrist.

Google's annual developer conference, Google I/O, kicks off on May 10. Don't let the words "developer conference" put you off, though, as Google I/O is one of the biggest and most exciting shows of the year.

We've already covered what we expect to see at Google I/O 2023, and that list includes the Pixel 7a, Android 14, and even a Google Pixel Fold. But although those are all things we're really looking forward to and expecting to see, there are a number of reveals we'd also love to happen ... but are extremely unlikely to appear on the grand stage.

Read more
I’ve used Android phones for 10 years, and I hate these ones the most
pixel 4 xl rear sticking out

I’ve been using and reviewing Android smartphones for at least a decade, and during that time, I’ve spent time with a massive variety of devices that mostly fall into three distinct categories: good, passable, and bad. But what about the ones that have really stirred my emotions in a negative way? The phones that have elicited a visceral, guttural response? I’m not talking about the ones I love, but the ones I’ve downright hated.

Here are the six models that have irked me the most over the last 10 years of using and reviewing smartphones, and the reasons why they’ve made this list.
Google Pixel 4

Read more
Your Pixel 7 is about to get a whole lot less buggy — here’s why
Two Google Pixel 7 Pro smartphones.

Google is rolling out a new Android 13 update that fixes 46 bugs and performance issues for the Pixel 7. The fixes range from squashing smaller bugs to larger, systemwide updates that do things like optimize battery life and overall performance, making this one of the most substantial Pixel 7 updates to date. While the update, Android 13 QPR2, provides a lot of fixes for the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro specifically, it also cleans up performance for the entire Pixel 6 line as well.

There are plenty of small fixes in the update. However, the bigger ones seem like they're going to noticeably improve the user experience for all Pixel 7 owners on just about every front.

Read more