1. Restart the iPhone periodically.
The iPhone is a phone with a computer in it. And as you likely know, computers simply work better if they're restarted occasionally. I'm in the habit of restarting my iPhone about once a week.
To restart your iPhone, hold down the top button for about 4 seconds. Then slide the on-screen indicator to turn it off. Note that it can take roughly 30 seconds for your iPhone to complete shut itself down.
To turn your iPhone back on, just hold down on the top button for about 1 second. The Apple logo will appear; after about 30 seconds your iPhone will be fully powered up and ready to go.
2. Sync your iPhone to iTunes at least once a week.
I sync my iPhone to iTunes periodically for two compelling reasons:
- Syncing backs up all of my iPhone's contents. If I lose or damage my iPhone, I won't lose all my data.
- iTunes keeps the software on my iPhone up to date. Apps and the system software are updated periodically with improvements; syncing my iPhone with iTunes helps me make sure that I'm always running the latest and greatest software for the iPhone. Note that a full system software update can take upwards of 15 minutes to install... during which time your iPhone may be inoperable.
I find myself using my iPhone more than any other phone I've owned. And therefore I run down the battery faster. I'm in the habit of charging up my iPhone every night to make sure I have the juice when I need it. I also have a car charger, as I use the power-hungry Maps application quite a bit.
4. Quit Apps when your not using them
Most apps are designed to be gentle on the iPhone's battery. But some apps really suck down the juice, driving the speakers, wireless, the CPU, and the screen hard. For generally longer battery life, when you're done using an app, terminate it by pressing the "home" button.
5. Take reasonable care of your iPhone
I find that an inexpensive silicone case can protect the iPhone well, and a makes it less likely that I drop my iPhone.
I also suggest that you don't get the iPhone wet. I've known more than one person that has either gone swimming with the iPhone, or has put their iPhone through the wash. Don't do it - the results are never pretty.
6. More tips? Let me know and I'll consider adding them here!
See my article on Inexpensive iPhone Stuff To Consider for my thoughts on cheap but useful iPhone accessories.