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Horrible battery drain issue with Project Fi SIM 0 Recommended Answers 17 Replies 28 Upvotes
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Last edited 12/10/18
I switched to Project Fi about 2 months ago and noticed that my phone battery was draining abnormally fast,  I charged my phone to 100%, and I woke up 8 hours later to find that there was 40% battery left. I have tried turning off location service, bluetooth, mobile data, WI-FI, disabled multiple apps running in the background, turned on stemina mode, even tried on 2 different phones, nothing was stopping the drain. I checked battery usage details and it showed Android System had used 38% and Phone Idle used 11% of battery life with no phone usage with mobile data and Wi-Fi off in 8 hours while I was sleeping.

I decided to switch back to my other provider's SIM and have had no battery drain issue at all. So I requested a data only SIM from Project Fi, and miraculously, battery usage went back to normal, and battery usage showed Android System used 6% and Phone Idle used 10% in 8 hours of no phone usage with mobile data and Wi-Fi on while I was sleeping.

Project Fi Data only SIM solved battery drain issue for now, however, I am unable to make phone calls and receive text messages unless I use apps like Google Voice and Hangout, this is very inconvenience. I would like to be able to go back to using my actual phone number for calling and texting since I pay for those services and I now have to pay for data usage to use Google Voice and Hangout for calling and texting.

 I like the ability to use Project Fi services internationally without having to switch SIM, but I don't know what else I can do at this point about the battery drain issue other than keep using the data only SIM.
All Replies (17)
Hello and welcome to the community,
How was your signal strength while using the full SIM?
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Hello Jason,

Signal for LTE and Wi-Fi were full.
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If you had a good signal there is no reason you should see extra battery drain from using a FI SIM.  What device are you having this issue with?
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I am having the same issue as the original poster, switched from Verizon to Fi on Sunday. Using a Pixel (1) XL. I leave my data turned off, as I telecommute.
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I have had the exact same issue since joining Fi about a month ago.  My battery barely makes it through the work day when before I would get a solid 12-14 hours, sometime more (on Pixel 2).  Very frustrating and it's highly unlikely I will continue on Fi.  I am noticing a one percent loss every few minutes!
Last edited 12/21/18
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After testing and checking for couple weeks, I have found the culprit for my battery drain issue.

This is related to Android System, somehow it keeps turning on background activity on its own. I have turned it off multiple times, when it's off, my battery usage is normal. But Android System keeps turning on background activity on its own and I don't know how to keep it off permanently.

Any ideas?
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You can't really turn off background activity for Android System.  I suggest running in safe mode long enough to see if you are still getting the drain.  I suspect a third party app is causing a conflict.  Hold the power button then tap and hold power off to reboot in safe mode.  Let us know the results.
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I am using a relatively new iphone 7+ and just switched from T Mobile to Google Fi. Crazy fast battery drain. Going to have to switch back to T Mobile if I can't figure this out within the next week or so.
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I have been on Fi since it debuted and always complained about the phones Nexus 6, Pixel, Pixel 2 assuming the problem is with the phone - while my wife joked about her iPhone being better. But, finally after switching to my wife's iPhone (which Fi now supports) - I realize it is Fi - now sure what else can be done - changing settings to reduce drain on battery as I tried every imaginable setting I could find. It is the become the reality. It has been hard to consider making the switch though.. have had terrible experiences with ATT in the past and no international roaming data overage (which is really important for me), so the only real option is T-Mobile. But, T-Mobile is a bit spotty coverage sometimes and I have see T-Mobile international data is 2G speeds.. unlike with Fi -which is pretty good at 3G and 4G speeds. So, unfortunately, it is about keeping phone charged and having a extended batter pack.
Last edited 2/7/19
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I solved the Google Fi battery drain on my 1st generation Pixel (2016) by turning off WiFi Calling (sometimes known as IMS Calling).  Go to Settings | Network & Internet | Mobile Network (should say Google Fi) | Advanced | Configure IMS calling.  At the menu, turn off the WiFi Calling. 

The reason that this works is that WiFi Calling creates a VPN and at least in some countries I have been this process uses a lot of battery, presumably to keep making connections.

I don't have this problem everywhere, but it happened when I visited England.  I've not noticed the problem in other places. 

Of course WiFi calling is one of the supposed features of Google Fi that saves money (for Google).  However, many people only want Google Fi for the ability to have reasonably priced data overseas, and anyway, who makes actual phone calls these days?  So turning off Wifi Calling is not a problem.  Hope this helps.
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