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Mobile phones play a pivotal role in supporting ubiquitous and unobtrusive sensing of human activities. However, maintaining a highly accurate record of a user's behavior throughout the day imposes significant energy demands on the phone's battery. In this paper, we present the design, implementation, and evaluation of METIS: an adaptive mobile sensing platform that efficiently supports social sensing applications. The platform implements a novel sensor task distribution scheme that dynamically decides whether to perform sensing on the phone or in the infrastructure, considering the energy consumption, accuracy, and mobility patterns of the user. By comparing the sensing distribution scheme with sensing performed solely on the phone or exclusively on the fixed remote sensors, we show, through benchmarks using real traces, that the opportunistic sensing distribution achieves over 60% and 40% energy savings, respectively. This is confirmed through a real world deployment in an office environment for over a month: we developed a social application over our frameworks, that is able to infer the collaborations and meetings of the users. In this setting the system preserves over 35% more battery life over pure phone sensing.