Apple Watch has evolved with new features and hardware changes steadily since the original launched in 2015, but one aspect that has remained the same is battery life. Read on as we take a look at the best ways to extend Apple Watch battery life with options in settings as well as portable chargers, external heart rate monitors, and more.

The first Apple Watch came with a rating of up to 18 hours of battery life, and that’s the same rating that Apple Watch Series 6 has today.

Depending on your usage, you may be able to squeeze more out of it, but if you’re tracking workouts with heart rate monitoring, using GPS, and more, it gets depleted more quickly. And if you’re traveling, you might rely on your watch more and drain the battery faster than usual.

We’ll start by looking at a few settings you can adjust to extend battery life, tips for Apple Watch battery life when tracking fitness, then look at some of the best portable chargers for Apple Watch.

How to extend Apple Watch battery life

Settings

If you’re willing to make some sacrifices to your Apple Watch functionality, there are some ways to extend its battery life with some settings tweaks.

  1. Reduce the display brightness of your Apple Watch by heading to Settings > Display & Brightness
  2. Don’t track any activities with the Workout app (the constant heart rate monitoring eats up battery quickly)
  3. Raise your arm less often to wake/brighten the display
How to extend Apple Watch battery - turn down display brightness

More restrictive settings options

These options may not always (or ever) be realistic, but they will save battery life:

  1. Use Theater Mode (swipe up from the bottom of your watch and tap the two masks icon). This will keep your watch and iPhone connected but prevent your watch screen from turning on when you raise your wrist and turn of Walkie-Talkie
  2. Turn off Cellular connectivity (swipe from the bottom of your watch and tap the top left cellular icon)
  3. Use Airplane Mode (swipe up from the bottom of your watch and tap the airplane icon). This will allow you to keep earning activity credit for your stand, move, and exercise goals and access other features on your watch but will disconnect it from your iPhone and reduce battery drain.
  4. Power Reserve Mode (swipe up from bottom > tap battery % > slide Power Reserve button. This will save a considerable amount of battery but it will only offer the option of seeing the current time. All other Apple Watch functionality is cut off so this will likely be more of a last resort.

Save Apple Watch battery life when working out

  1. If you want/need to track your heartrate, you can use an external Bluetooth heart rate monitor from Garmin, Polar, etc. instead of using the built-in Apple Watch sensor to save battery
  2. If you’re okay with keeping your iPhone on you, use that for music/streaming to save more Apple Watch battery life

Apple also notes in a support document to “keep Apple Watch half-charged when it’s stored for the long term. Also avoid charging or leaving Apple Watch in hot environments, including direct sun exposure, for extended periods of time.”

Extend Apple Watch battery life with a portable charger

Multi-day portable Apple Watch chargers

If you’d like to extend your battery life without making sacrifices to how you use your Apple Watch, there are some great portable charging options for the wearable.

Coming in pocketable sizes, portable Apple Watch chargers usually offer multiple refills for your watch and also include an additional output to charge your iPhone or another device.

Our favorite options are the Mophie Powerstation All-In-One and the Satechi Quattro Wireless Power Bank. Both feature:

  • Integrated Apple Watch charger
  • Qi wireless charging pad
  • USB-C and USB-A for additional charging (18W fast charging via USB-C)

The Mophie Powerstation All-In-One has an 8,000mAh capacity goes normally retails at $140 but is selling for under $100 lately.

The Satechi Quattro Wireless Power Bank has a 10,000mAh capacity and goes for $100 too.

Another option for multiple Apple Watch charges is from MIPOW. However, at about the same price as Mophie and Satechi with a smaller 6,000mAh capacity portable Apple Watch charger, it’s not as appealing.

Belkin appears to have stopped making its Valet portable Apple Watch charger, but you can sometimes find it at retailers like Amazon.

Portable mini Apple Watch chargers

If you’re looking for something even smaller and easier to keep on hand, a keyring or mini-style portable Apple Watch charger may be the best option.

Ugreen makes a pocket-sized MFi keyring Apple Watch charger that can be clipped onto your keys, bag, purse, or pants etc. This one uses USB-C and sells for $36.

Another great option is the MFi Satechi USB-C Magnetic Charging Dock. It’s a simple, compact Apple Watch charger that’s easy to keep with you and goes for $40. Anker also makes a similar option for $37. However, no option to attach these models to bags, pants, etc.

Finally, one of the most popular sellers on Amazon is a keychain Apple Watch charger with a small 1,000mAh battery. It’s not MFi but has strong ratings and runs for $20.

How to extend Apple Watch battery wrap-up

Alternately, you could just opt to pick up an extra Apple Watch charging cable to keep for traveling or in your everyday carry bag and use it with a power bank, USB power brick or on airplanes, in airports, hotels, and more.

Also, keep in mind that as your Apple Watch and its battery ages, you’ll see reduced performance and may need to charge it more often. But hopefully, between the mix of tips and tricks above, you can come up with a solution to keep the Apple Watch functionality you need without running out of battery during the day.

Also, we’re expecting Apple Watch Series 7 to arrive this fall. Check out all the details we know at this point:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.


Check out 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news:

You’re reading 9to5Mac — experts who break news about Apple and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Mac on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

About the Author