Smartphone Batteries – Facts And Myths

A smartphone battery is one of the most important aspects for many people when they go shopping for such a device. 

Many myths surround the battery of the smartphones around us, but many of them are exaggerated.

Battery Autonomy And Fast Charging

While most smartphones are capable of lasting a day on a full charge, battery anxiety has become a thing – Gone are the days of Nokia cell phones whose batteries lasted for a week. Indeed, your smartphone might easily last for a full day now, but what about next year? How will it behave after a few hundred charging/discharging cycles?

Battery endurance has evolved over recent smartphone generations, as fast chargers are slowly becoming the norm, at least for high-spec devices. 

The most advanced charging solutions are available on the like of the Galaxy S20 and iPhone 11. Those devices are capable of charging a lot in just a few minutes.

Fast charging added a lot of new benefits, but also a plethora of questions and fresh controversy – Does a high-power charger affect the health of your smartphone’s battery? Will it get damaged over time? What factors affect the health of your smartphone’s battery?

How Tough Are Smartphone Batteries Anyway?

Most mobile electronics (and electric cars) use batteries with lithium-ion chemistry, which are your best bet in terms of longevity. It’s hard to come up with a better solution, but scientists are still working tirelessly to develop one. Still, things haven’t improved so much in the battery department. However, that issue is partially solved thanks to software optimizations and advanced, energy-efficient electronics. Processors have come a long way since a decade ago, performing better and using less energy. 

One thing is sure – Your battery degrades over time. Whenever you charge it, you put it under stress, especially from the 80% to 100% level. That is certainly not a myth. In some cases, the battery should charge it twice from twenty or thirty percent to eighty percent instead of loading it from flat to full. You might lose one or two hours worth of autonomy, but at least you can count on your battery for a few more months (or even years, if you plan to keep your smartphone that long).

To sum it up, your battery’s lifespan depends much on how you use it.

Is Fast Charging Harmful?

No, it’s not, but there are some exceptions. A fast charger can get your smartphone topped up to eight times faster than a regular one. 

Fast chargers are safe as long as there isn’t any technical flaw with the charger or the battery itself. If everything is ok, there’s no reason to be concerned.

Fast-charging happens in two phases – the first phase pumps a blast of voltage into a nearly depleted battery, which charges your phone extremely quickly.

The first stage can usually take place up until when the battery reaches 70%. That’s the safe spot, as the battery can be charged at a higher power than usual without any adverse effect.

For example, Samsung says that its 45-watt charger can take a smartphone from zero to 70% in about half an hour.

The second charging phase, from seventy or eighty percent to full charge is a lot slower, and the decreased speed’s purpose is to prevent the battery from getting damaged.

Temperature

One common conception is that batteries get damaged by heat. 

That is partially true. Every battery has an interval of operating temperatures where it can be used safely. From that point, damage can occur, and in some extreme cases, the cell can burst in flames. 

It would be best if you certainly didn’t keep your phone in direct sunlight. However, its built-in safety systems prevent it from overheating by limiting its functionality when needed.

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