Phone Tips for Conferences

I’ve been having a lot of trouble with my phone lately, and I am about to attend several blog conferences (a place where I am going to rely on my phone to keep me from missing out!). It hasn’t been holding battery and is barely connecting to my home WiFi, so I’m using tons of data when I really need it for my trip. The plan is to follow these phone tips for conferences that I’m about to give you. Stay tuned on social media to see how it’s going.

Let’s start with the important thing – having power for your cell phone. You don’t want to miss out on a tweet that you won a grand prize, right? To maximize your battery power:

  • Turn your phone off at night for charging. Your brain will constantly be in “what am I missing out on” mode and want to check it all night long if you leave it on. You’ll need the rest, so let your body and phone sleep. What? You use your phone as an alarm? Me too. But there’s this brilliant invention that hotels have…an alarm clock OR a wakeup call. Use ’em.
  • Switch to a black background. It’s just a few days, and your phone will use a lot less power.
  • Turn off the WiFi. Sure, it’s free, but there are going to be so many of us trying to get that signal that it’s not going to be easy to get a chunk of it. Searching will drain your battery fast! Same with Bluetooth.
  • Know what apps drain the most. I can only speak to Android / Samsung, but if you go to your settings, check out “Battery” and see what apps are draining your battery. Turn them off, or consider removing them during the conference. Always close apps when you are done.
  • Consider Power Saving Mode. I have yet to use this, but likely will be.
  • Consider an alternative method of connecting. It’s going to be really hard for me to not be nose in phone, but I plan on having a notebook (old fashioned pen and paper) for making connections in person. I’ll jot down the things I need to tweet (like contest entries) then sneak away for some quiet time to schedule these on my social outlets. If I am not relying on my phone for everything, it will stay charged a lot longer.
  • Take advantage of charging stations. There are several throughout the conference floors. Don’t hog all the juice, and tell your fellow phone addicts where they are so that you have good battery karma.

And how about that data? We’ve turned off WiFi, so you’ll want to be sure you are connected and not going over your data. What do you do?

  • Set a limit on data usage. I plan to set a limit each day so that I don’t go over my monthly allowance. My phone will alert me when I’m close. If you share a plan with your family, ask them to do the same. (This is a phone setting that is based on an estimation, your cell provider will have the exact, so just be cautious and generous to yourself.)
  • Turn off notifications. Limit apps with push notifications. I’ll probably not only be turning off notifications but completely uninstalling apps that I won’t need during conference. (Keep a list of the ones to re-install.) Yes, that means email push, too. Manually sync up with your mail accounts. Related? NO STREAMING. This means turning off the games, videos (there’s a setting in your Facebook app to stop this), Maps, even the app store.
  • Be Social. Be social in real life – hug, squeal, talk with the people you interact with online. If you are social online, you’re likely 1) missing out on IRL connections, 2) making your followers who aren’t with you jealous, and 3) draining your data usage because you turned off your WiFi. There’s plenty of time to tweet and snap after conference – take it all in and enjoy.
  • Brave? Turn off the cellular data! This will definitely ensure you aren’t going over limits. I’ve been known to set my phone to Airplane Mode just to be able to use my camera and access my Memo app. It’s a lesson in what you really need.

Even braver? Don’t use your phone at all! Crutch step would be to carry a tablet device with you, but you’ll likely have a ton of swag to tote around, so you don’t want something big weighing you down. Bottom line? Be realistic with your phone usage during these conferences and truly invest in yourself. You’ll be thankful you did.

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