Since we first started using smartphones, about 20 years ago, they have undergone significant advancements. Charging your phone every day has, however, largely stayed constant. Why hasn’t the battery life improved like anything else?
Why Is Battery Life Still Poor on Smartphones?
Battery life has actually gotten worse, and you could make a fairly good case for it. Prior to smartphones, a charge could power a cell phone for several days. Of course, cell phones are far more sophisticated than older gadgets, but shouldn’t batteries also be improving?
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The majority of cell phones actually have relatively poor battery life. Unless you’re using a super-mega-ultra device like the iPhone 14 Pro Max or Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra, you’re undoubtedly keeping a careful check on the battery level and possibly even recharging before the day is over.
What is happening, then? When you really think about it, it’s actually quite easy. Batteries have improved slower than smartphones. Over time, batteries have improved, but these improvements pale in comparison to those made in smartphone CPUs, screens, and other parts.
The reason that battery life is still in the one-day range is due to the remarkable breakthroughs made in other smartphone components. There is more room for larger batteries because internal components are getting smaller. Throwing more mAh at the issue is still the best solution we have for enhancing battery life.
Sadly, the batteries used in modern smartphones still rely on outdated technologies. Between the 1980s and 1990s, there were significant improvements in battery technology, but since then, little has changed. The amount of use that lithium-cobalt batteries can still provide has practically been exhausted.
Photo Credit: Forbes
Will Batteries Eventually Improve?
Will we ever emerge from this rut is the real issue. The next significant development in battery technology is often anticipated, but it never materializes. When I initially received my phone, I never would have imagined we’d still need to charge them every day.
Graphene is far more significant in the field of battery technology. One atom thick graphite crystals make up graphene. Even though it is almost 2D, graphene has a high level of hardness and strength and is a superb electrical and thermal conductor. Compared to lithium-ion batteries of the same size, graphene batteries would have a 60% higher capacity.
Wonderful, isn’t it? Although graphene is an amazing material, there are several significant obstacles. The cost and difficulty of mass producing graphene are enormous. A graphene battery would not be practical for a smartphone. Graphene/lithium hybrid batteries, which are commercially available from businesses like Elecjet, are the best we can currently achieve.
Photo Credit: Phys.org
Simply put, smartphone technology is developing considerably faster than battery technology. By the time the next significant battery advance happens, our phones will probably require even more power. Expect not to alter your nighttime charging schedule any time soon. Your best option in the interim is to choose the iPhone or Android phone with the best battery life, or to carry a couple portable chargers.