iPhone 5 Battery Life May Be Impacted Greatly by Cellular Signal Strength

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Deep in its lengthy review of the iPhone 5, iLounge has performed an analysis on the battery life of the iPhone 5. The site tested the device under a number of conditions, including both cellular and Wi-Fi web browsing, voice calls, FaceTime calls, video recording, and video and audio playback.


    The phone performed fairly well but iLounge found battery life struggled when transferring cellular data or making voice calls, which they speculated was due to a weak signal:

    iLounge has the detailed results on its battery testing in its iPhone 5 review, but unsurprisingly, mileage will vary greatly depending on a number of factors including health of the battery, signal strength, screen brightness, and other considerations.

    Article Link: iPhone 5 Battery Life May Be Impacted Greatly by Cellular Signal Strength
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Aug 12, 2009
    Even doing "nothing" (phone is locked, etc.) on AT&T's 4G network (no LTE here yet) I've been losing 1-2% every few minutes. Once I switch to WiFi it goes back to normal. Hope this improves.
  3. macrumors 601


    Aug 17, 2007
    Another reason why I'm waiting 'til the end of 2013 to get the iPhone 5S.
  4. macrumors 6502a


    May 9, 2012
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    Battery life is definitely worse than my iPhone 4 for comparable usage. I am on Rogers in Montreal, quebec, and am often on 2-3 LTE bars.

    Hopefully the run time will improve as network coverage is expanded, and hopefully that will be soon.
  5. macrumors 604


    Mar 26, 2008
    lol what is LTE? i'm getting 2 bars of edge at my parents place if i'm lucky :D cannot wait to go back to uni and the real world soon
  6. G51989, Sep 26, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2012

    macrumors 68030


    Feb 25, 2012
    NYC NY/Pittsburgh PA

    ALL Cellphones, even dumbphones are affected by signal strength, the weaker the signal, the phone has to boost power to the radio to maintain a connection.

    Turn on Airplane mode on pretty much any dumb or smart phone, you'd be amazed how long the battery lasts without having to power the radio, I did that with my old Samsung Replenish Android Phone after I got my S3, I think with airplane mode on, it lasted almost a week before it died, my old 3GS would go almost a week to.

    In other news, the pope is catholic.
  7. macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2010
    Manufacturers love to BS the numbers

    Little over 4 hours seems pretty poor, but obviously you'd have to compare it to other devices. Maybe WiMax takes less power or something because there's no way I could kill my phone in 4 hours, even HBO 4g streaming I watched 3 hours and still had 40% one time.
  8. CIA
    macrumors 6502

    Jun 17, 2003
    This might explain my battery issue. While home ("4G" AT&T, not LTE area) I get full signal and the battery (now conditioned twice) works great finally.

    This past weekend I was hiking all day Sunday in a marginal coverage area and the phone barely lasted 6 hours.

    Home (good signal) it's gone 2 days now without needing a charge.
  9. macrumors regular

    Jan 20, 2009
    can't you see
    whats the point of LTE if
    you dont have a Battery
    will software fix this
    broken technology?
  10. macrumors 65816


    Nov 17, 2008
    Cudi Zone
    This is my first iPhone, and I'm really satisfied with my battery life. Albeit I'm on WiFi most of the time, I managed 12 hours on and off. LTE somewhat degrades my battery life, but it is by no means bad. Props to Apple.
  11. macrumors 68020


    Jan 22, 2009
    That's weird. Doesn't iPhone switch to cellular data when locked, regardless if Wi-Fi is enabled (when all background tasks are complete that is)?
  12. macrumors regular

    Oct 4, 2011
    Of course. The signal is displayed as weak when you are relatively far from the base station or subject to shadowing. At the same time, your cell phone has to transmit more power to upload any information, which leads to lower battery life.
  13. macrumors member

    Feb 25, 2008
    I've been exactly opposite. I switched from an iPhone 4 and with my use I was getting around 8 hours. Been approaching upwards of 15 with the iPhone 5. I do stream music and video via Airplay for around 50% of my daily use.
  14. macrumors 68020


    Nov 22, 2011
    East Coast USA
  15. macrumors newbie

    Sep 3, 2007
    Faster things download, faster we'll put our phones down. Boom. Won't even notice.
  16. macrumors 65816


    Mar 12, 2009
    Wichita, KS
    Is anyone surprised here? I've seen dramatic differences in battery life correlating to cell signal since I got my iPhone 3G in '08. For that matter, cell radios working harder significantly reduced batteries in old basic Nokia phones 15 years ago. Something about mountains being made of molehills comes to
  17. macrumors 603


    Oct 28, 2007
    Remember, it was the iPhone 4S that was plagued with battery problems, not the iPhone 4.
  18. TG1, Sep 26, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2012

    macrumors 6502a


    Feb 21, 2011
    Even my Razr Maxx will peter out around lunch time because our signal strength is absolutely atrocious at work (constantly waffles between 0 and 1 bar). Phones boost power whenever signal strength is poor. Nothing new here.
  19. macrumors 6502

    Mar 9, 2012
    My iPhone5 battery lasts much longer than my 4S. And my usage location, times and style has not changed.
  20. macrumors 604


    Mar 17, 2004
    My battery life on my iPhone 5 has been incredibly poor. I even turned LTE off yesterday and fully charged it overnight, and I'm halfway through my work day and down to 47%. I have only done texting and Facebook messenger.
  21. macrumors 6502a

    Jun 19, 2009
    United States
    My battery is fine. :p

    Attached Files:

  22. macrumors 603


    Oct 28, 2007
    Is this supposed to be a poem?
  23. macrumors 68000

    Jan 26, 2008
    This is nothing new folks. All cell phones have this issue. I don't understand the big deal.
  24. macrumors 6502a

    Aug 12, 2009
    The example I'm giving is when I am on cellular data (not on a WiFi network). At lunch, in a so-so coverage area, I lost 15% in an hour. It was locked in my pocket. At home, overnight, I lose about 3%.
  25. macrumors 603


    Mar 22, 2010
    Mine too. Much improved over my iPhone 4.

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