Battery Technology: The Race is On

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by jimbo1mcm, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. jimbo1mcm macrumors 68000

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    Mar 21, 2010
    #1
    The lithium polymer battery in the iPhone is good, but Apple knows it has to get a whole lot better. They, and many other companies are spending lots of money in R&D to find a solution. If you look at the problem: They are limited in size. People like the form size of the IPhone. They might increase the size a little to squeeze in a bigger battery but not meaningfully. They have a sophisticated OS that tries to be as efficient as possible in managing power requirements. They might be able to obtain more efficiency out of it, but again, not to a great extent. Apple can't shrink the electrical components very much in order to put a bigger battery in the space. And the problem will continue to grow. If the new IPhone has an advanced processor people will want to use its capabilities to do more power intensive applications such as gaming and videos. Customers also don't want to turn off certain features to get more battery life. You buy a phone to get these features. Battery technology has lagged behind and there doesn't seem to be any quick solution. Even if an exotic battery technology emerges it will take a few years to test and manufacture in quantity. So the next IPhone will be really good, but will still face the power problem. It looks like there will be a market for the next few years for supplemental power manufacturers like Mophie, etc. It might pay Apple to get in on this area. Maybe they can change the design to allow a quick battery replacement like some Android phones and digital cameras.
     
  2. nateo200 macrumors 68030

    nateo200

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    #2
    No responses?! I thought this would be a hot topic!
     
  3. Stealthipad macrumors 68040

    Stealthipad

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    #3
    The current battery technology lasts long enough for the average user. You just need to charge it every night and do not expect 2-3 days between charging.
     
  4. flipster macrumors 6502a

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    Boston
    #4
    OP brings up a good point. Apple has about a year at most to figure out a solution. What do I mean by this? As technology moves forward, we need to too.

    4G LTE IS A BATTERY HOG. Add an A5 processor and the mystical "4 inch screen" to this and your in trouble. Coming from an HTC Thunderbolt, I can tell you that battery life IS a problem. With that phone, I was getting 3 hours with light usage. LIGHT usage. Add dual core to that...well forget about it.


    So like I said, Apple has about a year. I wouldn't worry about. Well, maybe I would. Who knows, Apple has been famous for introducing "revolutionary" new features in things. Then again, their quality control has gone down significantly in the recent years based on my experiences. (iMacs arrived broke, yellow, loud, buzzing. iPhone broken home buttons out of the box, yellow screens, etc.) Who knows :apple:
     
  5. dave420 macrumors 65816

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    Jun 15, 2010
    #5
    I feel like I am in the minority that wishes it had a better battery, even if it had to be a little bigger. The iPhone 4 certainly has a better battery than my 2G iPhone, but it could still be better. I guess I just use it a lot.
     
  6. korndawg macrumors regular

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    Iowa
    #6
    You do know that dual cores are more efficient than a single core right?
     
  7. flipster macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    Maybe if it's plugged into a wall. We're talking about something that runs off a lithium ion polymer battery.
     
  8. victorvu macrumors member

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    Apr 9, 2011
    #8
    dual cores suppose to work faster, without much more voltage, thus save your phone time to get a job done. apparently you got more juice to use compare with single core phone. anyway, I heard there's some new battery technology (not sure the name :confused:). But it's unreliable, impossible to commercialize, and still in the lab.
     
  9. kdarling macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

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    #9
    Yes, it would be great if the next big mobile breakthrough was about the power supply.

    About a year ago, MIT researchers used carbon nanotubes to build a lithium battery with ten times the usual output.

    In other words, if your battery usually gave five hours, the MIT version could give fifty hours. That's an incredibly useful increase for handheld devices.

    I'm waiting for someone to come up with a way to mass produce those puppies, or something like them.

    PS. Anyone remember that company a few years back that claimed they had built an antenna good enough to power a laptop just from all the radiated 60Hz power and radio signals currently in the air everywhere? Whatever happened to them? Jail?
     
  10. HitchHykr macrumors 6502a

    HitchHykr

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    Virginia
    #10
    You are not the only one. When I hear others say that the current batteries last long enough for what everyone needs reminds me of Gates statement about no one needing more than 640k of RAM.

    I think they are now claiming that they have a battery that lasts ten times longer! :)

    I'm just kidding, of course, I'm not doubting MIT.
     
  11. 42streetsdown, Jun 28, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2011

    42streetsdown macrumors 6502a

    42streetsdown

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    #11
    We need more power efficient displays. LCDs are huge power hogs.

    The experiment at MIT wasn't a real battery. The electrodes they made were nowhere near the size needed for a real battery. It does look promising though
     
  12. skier777 macrumors 6502

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    Jul 3, 2010
    #12
    Bringing the price of OLED screen down is key in the battery conservation department. I bet you could get a twice the battery life out of an iphone with an oled screen and maybe 1.5 for a computer.
    With OLED screens, sites like this would also thrive : http://www.blackle.com/
     
  13. flipster macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    I personally think the real problem is 4G -- right now that is.

    Think about it. The HTC Thunderbolt basically has the same design and interals as the Droid X (both have 4.3" displays, about the same processor, etc), but the Droid X is 3G, HTC Thudnerbolt is 4G.

    Droid X = 9 hours of battery life with a lot of usage (much like the iPhone)
    HTC Thunderbolt = 3 hours of battery life with LIGHT usage

    The explanation for the horrible battery life is kind of obvious :cool:
     
  14. KoukiFC3S macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 4, 2010
    #14
    Yea, I was getting more than 3 hours with my Thunderbolt. It wasn't THAT bad.
     
  15. danny7 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 28, 2011
    #15
    3 hours ? its good i think....
     
  16. AlvinNguyen macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 23, 2010
    #16
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8H7 Safari/6533.18.5)

    My battery does not last a day - meaning 8-9 AM to midnight. It usually dies around 6 and so I carry a mophie powerstation with me. I used to have a battery case but it is way too thick and ugly (also from mophie) so I agree with you - whoever comes up with the best battery technology will make a lot of money selling to apple
     
  17. korndawg macrumors regular

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    Iowa
    #17
    Fail
     
  18. Sodner macrumors 68020

    Sodner

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    #18
  19. shazzam macrumors regular

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    Apr 19, 2010
    #19
    Apple has a really sweet patent for solar cells behind the LCD which recharges the battery from the display backlight. Maybe something like that?
     
  20. mnsportsgeek macrumors 65816

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    #20
    Can you imagine the day when we will never have to recharge our phones because of technology like this?
     
  21. HitchHykr macrumors 6502a

    HitchHykr

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    #21
    I guess if you are an outdoors salesman and carry your phone on top of your head...:rolleyes:
     
  22. PNutts macrumors 601

    PNutts

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    #22
    Citation please. There is no record of him making that remark.
     
  23. HitchHykr macrumors 6502a

    HitchHykr

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    Virginia
    #23
    Relax. The point is not whether Gates said it or not, it's about people's blinders on current needs and underestimating future needs.


    [​IMG]
     
  24. wordoflife macrumors 604

    wordoflife

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    Jul 6, 2009
    #24
    efficient = as in it uses less power. the A5 uses less power than the A4 despite being more powerful
     
  25. Cod3rror macrumors 68000

    Cod3rror

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    Apr 18, 2010
    #25
    The race for megapixels is pretty much over, no one wants a camera over 8MP, in fact a 5MP camera with a great sensor and a lens is enough.

    The race for the screen size and density is pretty much ending aswell. Apple is there, Android will move up the resolution and that's it.

    CPU and inside spec race is always on going but that too, much like laptops and desktops is becoming a "good enough" thing.

    I am surprised how there is no battery race, it must be very hard to come up with a new battery technology, whoever comes ups with a new tech though to make a modern smartphone last 2-3 days or even a week is going to be an instant winner.

    Imagine using your phone actively and not needing to charge it for a week!

    A more efficient(and smaller) battery will also have a huge effect on the size of the phone cause the biggest part in modern phones other than the screen of course, is the battery.
     

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