Smartphone companies have been consistently increasing the capacity of the built-in batteries. And though that marginally increases the overall battery life, The Washington Post has recently conducted tests showing that Lithium ion batteries are currently unable to keep up with the increasing power needs of new technologies.
Based on a series of battery life tests conducted, newer smartphone models were seen as unable to compete with the older variants in terms of battery life. To begin with, the new iPhone XS could not last as long as the previous year’s iPhone X, and died 21 minutes earlier. But the most stark difference may have been between the Google Pixel 2 and its newest iteration the Google Pixel 3, which lasted an hour and a half less.
According to the report, the only phone that seemed to be an exception to the general rule of newer phones lasting less than its predecessors was the iPhone XR. And this is because Apple took a step back and used LCD display instead of OLED. And the iPhone XR happened to have the longest battery run time among the iPhones with 25 hours of talk time, 15 hours of internet use, 16 hours of video playback, and 65 hours of audio playback. Among the OLED phones, Samsung Galaxy Note 9 lasted the longest.
Nadim Maluf, CEO of battery optimization firm Qnovo, spoke to The Washington Post and said that battery technology is being improved at a rate of almost five percent every year, but new technologies and their requirements for power is growing faster than that.
The report consulted with other publications like Tom’s Guide and CNET to come to the conclusion that OLED displays and cellular connectivity were the two biggest problem faced by smartphone batteries today. And two easy ways to somewhat counter this is turning down smartphone display brightness and using Wi-Fi only when needed.
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Maluf believes that soon consumers may have to get ready to compromise as standard battery sizes would not be enough to compensate for the growing energy needs.