Estar Battery Saver is a battery monitoring app for Android phones and tablets that has an unusual feature. It rates apps in the Google Play Store according to how much they drain your battery. This enables you to choose those that use the least power to maximise the length of time your device will last on the battery.
Before we get to those battery-saving apps though, let’s take a look at the rest of the features of this free app.
The opening screen has a battery level indicator that shows the percentage remaining and the estimated time it is expected to last. There are just two large buttons taking up most of the screen.
Tapping ‘Manage power hungry apps’ displays a list of apps that are running in the background and that are using an excessive amount of power. If you want to boost the battery life, there is a Stop button and Estar estimates how much longer the battery will last. That is useful if the battery level is really low and it will be some time before you can recharge it.
Sometimes the Warnings screen shows nothing and this means that none of the apps is using too much power. Swipe to the All Apps screen and every app that is running, even those in the background that you cannot see, are listed. You can view the energy rating and see how much battery is used in the background compared to the foreground (the red vs orange parts of the bar).
Tapping an app displays a row of buttons below and you can stop it, rate it or go to a Detail screen. For those people that want to dig deep into the battery usage, and not everyone will, the Detail screen is impressively detailed.
There is a text display of energy usage showing the amount used in the foreground and background for the CPU, network, screen and GPU. The power usage is also show on two charts too and you can see how much power an app used throughout the day.
There isn’t much you can do about the foreground power usage apart from avoiding using an app. If you don’t use it, it won’t use any foreground power obviously, but not running apps isn’t really an option. It is the background usage that is more important. Is an app using a significant amount of power when you are not actually using it? Some do and you can stop them in Estar.
Not everyone will need the highly detailed information that Estar provides, but it is there if you want to view it.
The unusual feature in Estar is the recommendations. When viewing the power usage of apps, select one and there is a Similar button that displays apps that are like it in the Google Play Store. Each app has a power efficiency rating, so you could switch from a high power usage app to a lower one.
Some of the suggestions are wide of the mark and they are not similar at all, but mostly they are similar. With some apps, there just isn’t an alternative and you are stuck with it. For example, Facebook is the only app you can access Facebook with and switching to a more power-efficient social network isn’t really an option. Sometimes there are options though, such as with security apps. You can see which ones use the most and the least power.
If you do decide to install one of the suggested apps, Estar opens it in the Google Play Store app where you can view the details, see screen shots, read reviews and install it in the usual way.
Instead of getting app suggestions, you can also tap the 'Install energy efficient apps' button on the home screen. It lets you browse the apps in a similar way to the Google Play Store, so you can browse games, free apps, recommended apps and so on.
Estar is a first class app that not only monitors how much power apps are using, but also offers suggestions for more efficient alternatives. Once you start choosing your apps by power usage, you should find that your phone or tablet lasts longer on a charge. Estar is recommended.
Title: Estar Battery Saver
Developer: Mobile Enerlytics
Size: 1.6 MB
Android: 3.0 and up
- Written by Roland Waddilove
- Created: 14 December 2014