The iPhone, especially the pro versions, is one of the best gaming phones. They can handle whatever games you throw at them.
However, does playing games damage your iPhone, especially its battery? This article will be a deep dive into everything relating to your iPhones battery and playing games, including if games ruin the iPhone and if you can safely charge your iPhone while playing.
Does Playing Games Ruin the iPhone?
Playing games does not ruin an iPhone, but gaming is a resource-intensive activity that puts a lot of strain on the battery. Although an iPhone’s battery is designed to retain 80% of its charge after 500 complete charge cycles, regularly playing games causes the battery to degrade faster.
I’m not telling you to stop playing games. Feel free to game on your iPhone but understand your iPhone’s battery will degrade quicker than if you never played games at all. Learn more about how your battery degrades over time in Apple’s article.
Apple recommends that iOS and iPadOS devices keep the ambient temperature between 0º and 35º C (32º to 95º F). If you game on your iPhone outside these temperatures, this can permanently shorten damage life, especially if you use a case.
It’s normal for your iPhone to get warm if you do a graphics-intensive process like playing games. However, if your iPhone doesn’t display a temperature warning (see below), then it’s safe to keep using your device.
If you game for hours with your iPhone, I recommend taking off its case if you have one; it allows the iPhone to cool itself correctly.
Later in this article, I will explain how you can boost your iPhone’s battery life while gaming, reducing the strain games place on your battery’s charge cycles.
How To Know Gaming Is Causing Your iPhone To Be Too Warm
Apple suggests avoiding using certain features in hot conditions or direct sunlight for an extended time. Instead, it includes GPS tracking like Google Maps of playing a graphics-intensive game like Genshin Impact.
Signs that show your device is operating outside of the normal temperature range
- Charging, including wireless charging, slows or stops.
- The display dims or goes black.
- Cellular radios enter a low-power state. The signal might weaken during this time.
- The camera flash is temporarily disabled.
- Performance slows with graphics-intensive or augmented-reality apps or features.
iPhones are powerful computers. Especially the newer versions are designed to do intensive tasks like gaming, which for sure will not ruin your iPhone.
Just remember to not game with your iPhone in direct sunlight or outside when it’s past 35º C(95º F), and your iPhone will thank you for it.
Gamed too much and want a new iPhone battery? Discover the complete guide to iPhone warranties to know if you can get a free battery replacement.
Does Playing Games Damage the iPhone Battery?
Regularly playing iPhone games does not damage the battery but causes it to degrade faster. Gaming is a resource-intensive activity for the iPhone CPU that puts a lot of strain on the battery. An iPhone’s battery is designed to retain 80% of its charge after 500 complete charge cycles.
Batteries are not meant to last forever. For example, your iPhone battery only has 500 complete charge cycles before it retains only 80% of its original charge.
Feel free to play as many games as you want on your iPhone. Just know that your battery will weaken quicker if you play games than if you didn’t play any games.
You can do things to boost your iPhone battery life when gaming, so your battery doesn’t deplete as much, lengthening the life on your battery.
5 Ways To Boost Your iPhones Battery Life while Gaming
1. Turn off Siri
- Tap on Settings.
- Tap on Siri & Search.
- Toggle off Listen for ‘Hey Siri’ ‘Press Side Button For Siri’ and ‘Allow Siri when locked.
- Tap on turn off Siri in the popup.
Gaming is one of the most demanding tasks your iPhone can do, and Siri does not stop working when your playing games. Therefore, temporarily turning off Siri will save your iPhone’s battery so it can focus on the demanding task at hand- playing games.
2. Play Games On Low-Power Mode. Add 50% to your gaming time!
If you have a newer iPhone like the iPhone 13 Pro Max, you can use low mode to add 50% more gaming time to your iPhone!
The above video shows that low power mode will not hurt your gaming experience. You can still enjoy gaming at 60FPS with no problem! You can experiment with older iPhones with low-power mode. Don’t expect the same performance you’d get with full power. The iPhone 13 Pro can handle it as it’s the most powerful phone for gaming.
Siri is automatically disabled in low-power mode but be careful. This mode turns off app notifications and stops your mail app from receiving emails.
To turn Low Power Mode on or off, go to Settings > Battery. You can also turn Low Power Mode on and off from Control Center. First, go to Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls, then select Low Power Mode to add it to Control Center.
3. Turn off the Location Services
- Go to Settings > Privacy, then select Location Services.
- Select an app, then turn Precise Location on or off
Anything that involves your iPhone GPS like Uber or Google Maps drains a lot of battery. So aside from specific games like Pokemon Go games that do not need location services to be on, make sure to turn them off before a heavy gaming session- your battery will thank you.
4. Keep Your Volume Low
You might not think about it but having your iPhone’s speaker on full blast drains a lot of battery. I know how important a game’s audio can be to enjoy the game properly but using headphones like AirPods takes the strain on the battery.
I recently bought a pair of AirPods 3 and am unhappy with the purchase. Take a look at the best price for AirPods on Amazon via this link.
5. Keep the Brightness Low
The more bright your iPhones screen, the more the battery will drain. A brighter screen does not crisp. Trust me. It won’t make a huge difference to your gaming sessions if you reduce it a lot.
Rather than use the auto-brightness feature, I recommend using the slider bar on your iPhone to adjust brightness manually.
Extra Tips for Conserving iPhone Battery
- Turn off Bluetooth when not in use.
- Don’t keep your iPhone in vibration mode.
- Turn off AirDrop when not in use.
- Keep iOS and app apps up to date.
- Charge your iPhone between 20% to 80% for optimal battery health.
Want your iPhone to be replaced but don’t have the extra cash? See my guide here on the best excuses to replace your iPhone.
Can I Charge My iPhone While Playing?
You can charge your iPhone while playing, but the charging will be slower as the iPhone’s processor uses power to make the iPhone run. If you feel the back of the iPhone getting hot while charging, you should let the iPhone charge by itself. The iPhone’s lithium-ion battery does not like hot temperatures, and this will sharply reduce your maximum charging capacity.
You ‘can’ charge your iPhone while playing, but I wouldn’t recommend it. The main reason is temperature.
Playing games is an intensive process for your iPhone. It’s normal for your iPhone to get hot while playing, but also when charging. Playing games and charging at the time depending on your iPhone can ut the iPhones temperature past the normal operating levels according to Apple, over time this will destroy your iPhones maximum battery capacity.
Want to know what are acceptable battery health percentages for your iPhone? You can read my article to learn more.
It’s always better to charge your iPhone when you’re not using it. It allows your iPhone to place 100% of its resources to charge the battery. If you charge your iPhone while in use, your iPhones have to spend resources on keeping applications running, so the battery will charge a lot slower, if not at all.
Playing games is VERY demanding for your iPhone. Your iPhone’s battery likely will not charge at all when playing games and will heat up to damaging levels.
One thing to keep your iPhone’s battery healthy is only using genuine Apple products to charge your iPhone. If you use cheap knock-offs or a charge you bought at a random store, there is no guarantee these chargers are safe for your iPhone.
I suggest only using MFI(Made for iPhone) charging accessories to have peace of mind knowing your iPhone is being charged safely; this includes the charging cable and the charging brick.
Take a look at the best MFI chargers available for a bargain on Amazon your iPhone will thank you.