Battery technology is next to be at the front of the smartphone race

Smartphone technology has reached the point where new innovations are extremely difficult to find. This means that developing existing features is becoming increasingly critical, and the next generation of smartphones will be at least partly defined by a race to deliver superior battery technology.
smartphone batteries
The Apple iPhone range has struggled to keep up with battery life in recent generations. Photo: Apple.

Diminishing returns

Despite the fact that it is difficult to wow consumers with a new smartphone nowadays, people are using mobile devices more than ever. This puts a huge amount of pressure on the batteries included in handsets, and not all of them are able to stand up to the test.

Most notably, the iPhone range has been criticized for many years for its relatively paltry battery life. This has perhaps contributed to receding Apple sales, even though the iPhone obviously remains an iconic smartphone.

Indeed, when we look at the top performing smartphones in benchmark testing, the iPhone is absolutely nowhere to be seen, certainly along the top 10 devices. And the market-leading Samsung Galaxy range doesn’t appear in the top three either, although the Android handset does perform rather more favorably than its great Apple rival.

Instead, the best smartphone on the market for battery performance is the Moto G7 Power. This handset features a massive 5,000 mAh cell, and therefore we shouldn’t necessarily be particularly surprised that it performed so well.

mobile batteries
The Samsung Galaxy range has overtaken the iPhone, probably partly due to its superior battery life. Photo: Samsung.

Benchmark testing

Benchmark testing indicated that the Moto G7 Power is capable of over 14 hours on a single charge. This means that the handset outperforms the iPhone by approximately 50%. This could be expected considering that the cell included in the Motorola product is much larger than the iPhone battery, but also begs the question of when the iPhone will be armed with a suitable battery.

The other big performers in the smartphone battery marketplace are also relatively little known devices. The Vivo Nex 3 has a slightly smaller battery than the Moto G7 Power, and consequently lasts for just over 13 hours in battery testing.

And the Oppo A9 2020 lasts for nearly 13 hours, despite having a battery that is exactly the same size as the top performing Moto G7 Power. This demonstrates that power-saving functionality can be extremely effective, as one would expect the two smartphones to perform at a relatively similar level.

However, although none of the big names make the top three performers in terms of benchmark testing, the Samsung Galaxy A90 comes in fourth. With a battery test of just over 12 hours from its 4,500 mAh cell, this Samsung handsets performs rather respectively, which could be a big contributing factor in why Samsung handsets have become so popular in recent years.

smartphone batteries
Motorola devices have been shown to be top of the pile in battery life benchmark testing. Photo: Motorola.

iPhone floundering

When one assesses the figures, it becomes clear that Apple has some catching up to do. The iPhone remains an incredibly popular brand, but Apple has rested on his laurels for too long, still delivering a slick iPhone experience, but failing to keep up with the top specs in the industry.

This will be one area where Apple will be expected to improve significantly when the iPhone 12 likely arrives later this year.

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