You may have heard of "Range Anxiety". It's the worry that your car will run out of petrol before you have a chance to find a filling station. I have "power anxiety" - the crushing realisation that my smartphone's battery will be dead by lunchtime if I use it for more than five minutes.
Over to Ben Smith:
... a frequent complaint is that we don’t want thinner phones. We’d rather manufacturers used space savings to provide larger batteries. You know… ones that last more than a day like they used to.
Damn straight! Do I care if my phone is a bit thicker if it means I can go all day without a charge? No. No I do not.
My Samsung Galaxy S barely gets half a day of "real" use. I tend to browse the web for an hour while commuting, listen to music over BlueTooth, make a few calls and texts, FourSquare, and take a few photos. Come lunchtime the phone is whimpering in the corner just begging to be plugged into a USB socket. So, I either have to keep my phone sucking at the teat of my laptop, or severely curtail my usage. Unacceptable.
So, I bought myself an extended battery for the SGS. Specifically, the CostMad Samsung Galaxy S i9000 3500mAh Extreme Extended High Capacity Quality Spare Replacement Backup Battery with Battery Back Rear Cover Case. Quite a mouthful, but here's how the wee beastie looks:
Total cost? £9. Less than a tenner from some random factory in the Far East.
Now, the first thing that you'll notice is that the battery is so massive that it requires a new backplate. It bulks up the phone, but does have some advantages.
It feels heftier. The weight isn't very different from the original, but it feels more solid. The slippery and flimsy backplate is replaced by a rubberised and solid case which fits snuggly.
I let the battery charge while the phone was off. Once done, I proceeded to use it as normal. At the end of the day, this was the result.
Whoa! 8 hours of, if anything, heavier than usual use and I'm still have over half of my battery power available.
So, I went home, browsed the web, watched some YouTube, played some games, and generally tried to force the battery into submission.
By this time my regular battery would have been dead and buried, but this one just kept going!
I could never buy a phone with a non-removable battery unless I was sure that it was of sufficient capacity to keep me going throughout the day. Sure, you can buy portable chargers, solar chargers, even hand cranked chargers - but that's just a stop-gap as far as I am concerned.
I could keep my phone plugged in - but that rather defeats the purpose of a "mobile" phone.
As I head off to Mobile World Congress, a battery like this is a must.
- I'm running a beta build of ICS. That may not be particularly well optimised.
- I keep my screen brightness on lowest rather than auto.
- I'm usually in WiFi coverage.
- I have push notifications for Gmail and Exchange set on.