Hugh Pickens writes writes "Chris Moran writes that with Verizon's 4G network covering a good chunk of the country and AT&T gaining ground, more smartphone users have access to the fastest wireless service available but because 4G coverage isn't truly continuous in many locations, users' batteries are taking a big hit with 4G as phones spend an lot of battery power trying to hunt down a signal. "You've got a situation where the phones are sending out their signals searching and searching for a 4G tower, and that eats up your battery," says Carl Howe, a vice president for research firm Yankee Group. The spottiness of 4G stems at least in part from the measured approach carriers have taken to it, rolling out the service city by city. There are a few tricks 4G users can try to extend battery life such as turning off your 4G connection when you don't need the fastest speeds — when using email, for instance or using a program such as JuiceDefender to search for apps you may have downloaded that you don't need to run all the time, and erase them. Bita Goldman, an attorney in New York, says she carries an extra charger with her for her HTC Evo smartphone, which runs on Sprint's WiMax 4G network. "By 4 o'clock, I have to charge it.""