Have you ever picked up your cell, looked at the battery life, and go, “But I just charged this thing. What gives?” It’s not just you. According to The Washington Post, the smartphones battery life is getting worse. And, chances are, you’re new and upgraded 2018 smartphone’s battery life is actually worse than older models.
Phone makers have claimed to have tackled this battle by including more-efficient processors, low-power modes, and artificial intelligence to manage app drain, but it’s no secret to the battery industry that the lithium-ion batteries in smartphones have hit a plateau.
So, what gives? According to Nadim Maluf, CEO of a firm that optimizes batteries called Qnovos, batteries improve at a very slow pace, about 5 percent per year.
“But phone power consumption is growing faster than 5 percent,” says Maluf.
High-resolution screens, more complicated apps, and, to be frank, our inability to put the phone down, is sucking the life out of cell batteries. To add to it all, wireless speeds are increasing with new technologies like 5G services that will indubitably drain our phones with increasing demands.
Although advancing cell phone technology and Li-ion batteries struggle to find their balance, there are solutions to help improve battery life. Lowering screen brightness, using WiFi when possible, going on low-power mode, and the obvious, checking your phone less often, are all viable solutions.
Still, some smartphones do better overall when it comes to battery life. Read the full article for more.
Scientists and engineers in the battery field continue to work hard to push lithium-ion batteries limits. In doing so, it’s important to look back at the history of batteries, as the invention and commercialization of lithium-ion batteries was no easy feat.
George E. Blomgren, the author of “The Development and Future of Lithium Ion Batteries,” one of the most-downloaded Journal of The Electrochemical Society papers since April 2017, discusses this in his paper. In 1991, “Cells under test would show indications of dendritic lithium shorting (observed as negative voltage spikes during charge) followed by occasional and unpredictable cell explosions,” which frightened people. As such, Blomgren says the fact that Li-ion batteries success was not guaranteed by any means is a lessons researchers can apply today as they work to improve them.
“It took a lot of development and very strenuous attention to detail to make lithium-ion batteries a reality,” says Blomgren in a Q&A with ECS. “And so, I think that’s a lesson that anybody can learn in a new technology area. The things that are obvious in looking back were not at all obvious at the time of the original development.”