Tag Archives: charging

Garmin Vivoactive 3: 4 Tips For Extending Battery Life.

by Anura Guruge

On Wednesday, Nov. 22, 2017, 6-days into wearing my brand new Vivoactive 3 (which I got as a replacement for my Vivoactive HR) I realized to my horror that I was charging it every night!

A Google showed that I was NOT alone.

So, I set out to see if I can try and coax more life out of the battery.

I followed these 4 steps and I appear to have more than DOUBLED my battery life — though it is still from adequate or acceptable. My ‘HR’ would literally go for ‘weeks’ without needing to be charged (and that I mean about 9-days). So, having to charge the ‘3’ every other day is NOT good. Would be a real pain if I was travelling.

The 4 Tips.

  1. Ensure that your Vivoactive 3 firmware is at 2.60 (and NOT at 2.50).
  2. Recycle power, i.e., turn it off and then on, after charging it.
  3. Keep the screen locked as much as possible. The touch screen is very sensitive and comes on at the slightest touch.
    Having it locked is real important while you sleep, take a shower or wear long sleeves that might brush the screen.
  4. Do NOT repeatedly synch with your ‘phone’. Keeps the synchs down to 4 – 6 a day. Noticed that synching noticably
    drains the battery (as you watch). I guess the ‘3’ downloads more data than previous devices.

And, of course, keep the brightness down as low as you can, and ditto for the ‘time out’. Hope this helps.

Please share YOUR tips. Thanks.

Related Posts:
>>>> Search ‘Fitbit’ & ‘Garmin’.

by Anura Guruge

Garmin Vivoactive 3 Has A MAJOR Battery Drain Issue.

by Anura Guruge

Click to ENLARGE.

Click to access the Garmin Forum on this topic.

Click to access Garmin forum at Reddit dealing with this issue.

I have only had my Garmin Vivoactive 3 for 6 days so it took me awhile to fully appreciate what was happening. Plus, I did have the Backlight cranked up to 40%. Though that that was the culprit. Also think I need to lock the touchscreen when I go to bed because I noticed it was coming up often while I was in bed!

I am charging it even as I write.

Googled “vivoactive 3 battery issues“. WOW. I am, by no means, alone. A lot of others experiencing the same problem. Not good.

I am on Firmware 2.60. Problem supposedly started with 2.50. 2.60 does NOT seem to have fixed it.

So, a heads up.

Click to access post on this blog.

Related Posts:
>>>> Search ‘Fitbit’ & ‘Garmin’.

by Anura Guruge

Huston Flood Victims Calling 911 — ‘Stay On Line’ Is NOT The Greatest Advice.

by Anura Guruge

I just listened to the Press Conference by Houston officials, including the Mayor, on their ongoing flood recovery plans.

They are RIGHTLY very proud that they have got their 911 ‘Call Waiting’ queue down from 150 yesterday to 10 today. That means that if you call Houston 911 today there is always likely to be 10 calls ahead of you. Most of us know what this is about from calling cable companies, GoDaddy or some credit card companies.

Telling them to please ‘Stay on the Line’ and not hang-up is NOT the greatest advice.

Why? Cell phone battery life.

In any kind of disaster, hurricanes/tornadoes/floods chief among them keeping cell phones charged is a MAJOR problem.

‘Staying on the Line’ will drain batteries quicker.

They really should have a CALL BACK system. I have noticed, with GLEE, that more and more companies have instituted this. You call and they promise to call you back — and most do. That works and is better than staying on line.

911 systems should really look into this.

Related posts:
++++ Search ‘storms >>>>

by Anura Guruge

Lenovo Tab 2 10″ 16GB Android Tablet — Pretty Darn Impressive For $171.

by Anura Guruge

I ordered the Lenovo 10″ Tab 2 last Thursday when the 10.6″ 8-Core Dragon Touch X10 Android Tablet which I had got from Amazon the day before proved to be a major disappointment in terms of screen resolution and USB-based battery charging.

The 1920 x 1200 screen on the Lenovo, as is mentioned in all the product reviews and many of the Amazon ‘feedback’, is pretty spiffy. Vastly superior to the Dragon X10. Crisp and vivid (and I do have it set to ‘vivid’). It is also surprisingly and pleasantly fast. That was a bonus. As I have stated before 96% of what is do on a pad is Web browsing — using Chrome. And it seems to be very adept at doing that. I am pleased.

Slightly more ‘bloatware’ than was in the Dragon. Most of it was easy enough to remove though I am still stuck with a few, such as ‘FM Radio’, which I will never use because it needs an earphone cord to act as an antenna and I don’t use (or like) earphones.

It upgraded, as part of a mandatory System Update, to Android 5.0.1. So I have only used it with Android 5. Works fine (so far). Haven’t found an APP that has not been compatible,

The only problem I have is I can’t get a magnetic compass APP to work. Yes, I know I about calibration but I still haven’t managed to crack that. GPS works. So not the end of the world.

Only has USB-charging (as opposed to also have a separate charger as was the case with the Dragon) and charging, so far, seems par for the course.

So bottom line, after (say) 28 hours and maybe 90 minutes of use is that ‘So Far So Good’, screen is impressive and performance, including Wi-Fi, more than acceptable. I am happy.

Hope this helps.



Click to access Amazon listing. Smaller and a (slower) Quad-Core as opposed to the 8 in the Dragon.

Related posts:
**** Search ‘Androidfor other related posts >>>>

by Anura Guruge

Dragon Touch X10 Android Tablet — Screen Resolution & Battery Life Not Up To My Criteria.

by Anura Guruge

The 10.6″ 8-Core Dragon Touch X10 Android Tablet which I ordered from Amazon over the weekend arrived yesterday. Definitely a nice, responsive unit with NO BLOATWARE — and it was fully charged when it arrived. It even came with fairly comprehensive instructions and a very cute, ‘clingy’ screen protector with additional guidance. I was able to get it up and running with my core set of APPs — Chrome, Bank of America, Fidelity, ‘GPS’, ‘Home Security’ etc. — very quickly and with NO issues. I was impressed.

But, I have already printed the paperwork from Amazon to return it! I used it for less than 2 hours!

There were two things that were not up to my requirements and those were such that I would never be happy with this tablet. These being: screen resolution not good enough when using Chrome and battery charging/battery life.

The screen resolution is 1366×768. In theory that should be good enough. It is OK when you are using APPs so to speak, but not when trying to read Webpages on Chrome — in particular ‘marketwatch.com‘ (in desktop mode). Deanna had a look and agreed. Resolution way below par. Also the case when watching video. Given that I HAVE to read at least 30 – 40 minutes of ‘marketwatch.com’ a day, in order to be I, this was NOT going to fly. I need a tablet where I can read Webpages without the screen resolution getting in the way.

The second issue proved to be worse that I had hoped, given that I had already read, on the Amazon reviews that this could be a stumbling block. Though it can be charged via USB it is NOT ‘happy’ being charged as such. It, appears, though I did not bother to try, that it prefers to be charged using its dedicated charger. I had hoped that this would not be as bigger an issue as it proved to be. It was NOT fully charged after 7.5 hours plugged into my standard USB charger! That is not acceptable. Every room in this house is set up, one way or another, for USB charging. Plus when we travel I carry a pouch of USB chargers. I am not going to take another dedicated charger. IF it is not going to charge, fast and adequately, via USB, it is NOT for I. Alos noticed that battery capacity was going down in front of my eyes. Wow.

It also appears that I can’t get the magnetic sensor, used by non-GPS compass APPs to work. Not a showstopper BUT annoying. I like an ‘analog’ non-GPS compass on my tablet. Also not convinced that it had the latest and greatest Wi-Fi chips.

So the Dragon, alas, is going back. Shame. 

I have already ordered a 10″ Lenovo tablet:


Click to access Amazon listing. It has a higher resolution HD screen. Smaller and a (slower) Quad-Core as opposed to the 8 in the Dragon.

Related posts:
**** Search ‘Amazonfor other related posts >>>>

by Anura Guruge

Totally Hooked On Power Outlet Taps With Built-In USB Charging Ports.

usbpowerjacksdsf.Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail
by Anura Guruge

Every once in awhile I run into a product that I immediately fall in love with because it is exactly what I needed — sometimes not even knowing that I so needed it till I saw the product.

That is the case with this 6-outlet wall mount tap with 2 built-in 2.4 amp USB charging ports. It is just what I wanted. I love it.

Yes, like so many other households our house is littered with charging devices — we even have them in the car and I have a bag of adapters and cords for when we travel.

With my two cameras, the Panasonic Lumix FZ1000 and the Sony RX100 M2, and Teischan’s Samsung, I have a charging station set-up in my office just for the batteries given that I have 8 batteries in total to deal with. For convenience I have it on the floor next to my reading chair since much of what I read when seated in that chair has to do with cameras. So I also need power for a reading light and a clock around that chair. Though I have an extension strip off the wall outlet I was running out of outlets.

So the other day I was thinking that it was time to get a wall ‘block’ with say 6 outlets. I was going to get around to ordering it. Then within 48-hours I get an e-mail, purely by coincidence, by a TV promotion company trying to sell me a tap with built-in USB charges. Eureka! That is what I wanted.

I checked Amazon. Their prices were better. They actually had the TV promotion product for CHEAPER. But it did not have very good reviews.

Then I found this, the ‘Cable Master‘ product, with better reviews and only fractionally more expensive. I ordered it. It arrived Friday.

It works. Works well. The USB chargers worked, in parallel, just fine. I know that 2.4 amp is good. That is what I use in the car. I charged my pad, Teischan’s Samsung camera and my phone. All worked fine. I am chuffed. I am going to get a FEW of these. I would like to have one in each room.

Yes, down the road, say 10 years from now, I visualize all new houses with power outlets with built-in USB charging ports.

Cable Matters 6-Outlet Wall Mount Surge Protector with USB ports

Click to ENLARGE.

First Forray With Walmart Straight Talk, Phones & Service, Was A Total Disaster.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.


Anura Guruge

UScellRelated posts:
>> U.S. Cellular 4G LTE Data …
>>Feb. 27, 2013.

>> U.S. Cellular Battery Swap …
>>Dec. 6, 2009.

We are not big phone users, I even more so than Deanna. Anybody who has tried to call me would have realized that I am in no way tied to my cell. Unless I am at this PC and my cell happens to be close by, my cell and I are usually not in the same place. I can go for days without ever picking it up. I have never texted and have no desire. Though I was involved with computer support for decades I refused to carry a pager. E-mail is my preferred means of communication. We have an 800 minute plan (or similar) with U.S. Cellular and typically use about 200 minutes a month. But, we pay $80+ a month to U.S. Cellular — and that is not because I am calling Sri Lanka (which I don’t do often). I have been with them for about 14 years! We also have a TDS landline (and pay for two) which we hardly ever use.

straighttalkSo every once in awhile I get on a kick to reduce our cell bill. Last week (or the week before) we had a visit from two of Deanna’s aunts from Maine and Maryland. The one in Maine has been a department manager at Walmart for 7 (or 9) years. She told me I should switch to Straight Talk with the $30 a phone plan. She had been using Straight Talk for a number of years — albeit with the $45, unlimited plan. So, I checked it out — with some trepidation. Once I determined that they support cell number transfer I decided to give it a try, especially because Deanna’s aunt was getting a good (AT&T) signal at the house. So, as ever, I did some poking around. The ONLY way I could beat my U.S. Cellular rate was to go with this $30 refurbished phone plan — which included the first month free. It was essentially a free refurbished Motorola phone with the first month of service. I had Motorola phones for years and was kind of partial to them. We currently have LG phones that look just like old Motorola phones. Plus, Motorola used to be a very good client.

STphoneSo I ordered two of the $30 refurbished phones last Wednesday. They came in the mail Saturday. I charged them for about 8 hours. Noticed that one phone didn’t start charging for about 10 minutes while the other started immediately. My antennae went up. Last night before I went to bed, i.e., around 1 am, I checked both phones. They were both fully charged.

This morning I went to activate them and transfer the numbers. Was NOT good. I was NOT impressed.

1. Said that my Alton zip, 03809, was NOT supported! That really got me mad. I had never seen a warning that this service was only available in certain areas. I decided to take a chance and gave it a Concord ZIP. It took that.

2. Then I got a Server Error and lost all of the data I typed. By now I was not amused.

3. Finally entered all the data required to transfer the cell number and hit enter. Nothing happened. Checked the phone. It was DEAD as a doornail. The other one was fine. There was NO way I could bring this one back to life. I plugged it back in. Nothing. Yes, I could have swapped batteries, but I would still have ended up with a dead phone.

Nothing happened with my activation, transfer etc. because the phone wouldn’t power-up. I am not impressed.

Yes, immediately got an RMA from Walmart online. No hassles there. I can return the phones at any store.

But, I lost an hour. I am not amused.

A pox on Straight Talk.