Wednesday, September 3, 2014

How to Make Your Smartphone Battery Last Longer – Hardware Choices

Smartphones are getting better all the time and have improved in almost every area imaginable from when they were first introduced. They can do more things and can do them better with each new generation of smartphones. However, the one area where you can argue that smartphones have not improved much is battery life.

This is important, because no smartphone can run without battery power. No matter what kind of phone you have and what your phone is capable of, it is of no use to you if the phone cannot be turned on due to lack of power. Your smartphones may be capable of doing all sorts of things, you might as well not have it if it cannot be turned on.

While there may be some people who don't mind when they can't use their smartphone, most people need to have access to their smartphone. For that reason, it's necessary to pay attention to a few details if you're in the market for a new smartphone. Your smartphone will last a lot longer if you pick the right attributes in a smartphone.

1. Battery size and type determines how much power your phone has

Probably the most important factor in deciding how long your smartphone will last is the battery included, which determines how much power your phone has available for use. Before selecting which smartphone you will use, you need to look at the capacity of the battery and what it's made of.

The capacity of a battery will be expressed in mAh. The bigger the capacity, the more power there is for the phone to use. Further more, you need to take into account the battery type. There are two types currently used in smartphones, Lithium-Ion and Lithium-Polymer.

The latter will last longer, but is more expensive and is usually only found in more expensive smartphones. Lithium-Ion is cheaper and is far more common in smartphones. Comparing two batteries with the same capacity, the one made of Lithium-Polymer will last longer than the one made of Lithium-Ion.

Keep in mind that bigger phones, such as phablets, tend to have bigger batteries than smaller phones. That is why if battery life is important, you need to stay away from small and thin smartphones. Those simply do not have enough room for a battery with enough capacity to last a long time. In general, bigger smartphones can be used for a lot longer because they tend to have more power available.

2. Smaller screens and lower resolutions consume less battery power

Once you've decided what battery is acceptable based on how you use your phone, you need to look at the components that a smartphones is made of. These components all consume their share of battery power. To help your smartphone last as long as possible, you want to have components that consume as little power as possible.

One of the first things to look at is the type of screen on a smartphone. The bigger the screen, the more power it needs. The higher the resolution, the more energy is needed. If you want your phone to last longer, you need the pick the smallest screensize and resolution that's acceptable to you.

To find out what it is that you need, you should try out different screens. For example, if a four inch screen is adequate, there is no need to buy a phone with a five inch screen. If a High-Definition (HD) screen with a resolution of 1280x720 is good enough in you eyes, there is no need to pay extra for a Full-HD screen with a resolution of 1920x1080.

3. Faster, more powerful smartphones will drain a battery faster

In general, high-end smartphones need more power than low-end smartphones, which in turn need more than feature phones. More powerful hardware correlates to increased energy consumption, which means that the battery will be drained faster. For example:
Higher clock speed consumer more power than lower clock speeds
More cpu cores need more power than fewer cpu cores
More random access memory (RAM) uses more energy than less RAM

Another thing to keep in mind that newer processors tend to be more energy-efficient than older generations. The transistors are smaller with each generation of processors and there tends to be less leakage. All of this contributes to a processor that needs less power than its predecessor.

If your goal is to have a smartphones that will last as long as possible, you need to for the minimum in terms of hardware specs. For instance, if a dual-core smartphone is enough for you, there is no need to get a smartphone with a quad-core cpu. All the extra horsepower will just drain the battery faster.

4. Faster cellular connections need more power

As cellphones have progressed from 2G to 3G and now to 4G, so too has their data transfer speeds. The latest generations cellular connections can transfer data faster, but they also need more power to accomplish their fast uploads and downloads.

Therefore, if there are no 4G networks in your area, you may want to settle for a smartphone that's compatible with 3G only. Not only are you saving on power, but you'll be saving money on hardware that you won't be using anyway as 4G smartphones carry a premium in terms of price.

In fact, if you want to use a cellphone for as long as possible, you need to use a feature phone and not a a smartphone. The same factors that restrict what they can do compared to smartphones also ensure that feature phones run longer than smartphones. So if you need to have the ability to make a phone call, keep the feature phone with you.

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Related articles:
  1. How to Make Your Smartphone Run Longer – Software Configuration & Settings
  2. How to Extend Cellphone Battery Life – Accessories & Tips

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