Battery Life experiment

Ipheuria

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I have decided to do a little experiment on battery life using my iPhone 5. Usually I charge my phone every night over night while I sleep and then get whatever battery life the following day until I plug in again when it gets low. I have decided to change that long standing habbit and see if the battery life improves or stays the same. The new plan is not to charge the phone at night anymore but instead to only charge it at work in the mornings and only when it is at 10 or 20%. At night I will power it off every night just to see what the resulting behaviour is going to be.
 

Alli

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You know modern batteries no longer need to be "conditioned," right? It shouldn't make a big difference in the end game, but what is convenient to you as far as charging.
 

Tanbam

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Are you talking about battery life in the sense of how long it lasts between charges or how long it will last before needing to be replaced? Those are two different things.

Your battery will last longest before needing to be replaced if you keep it at about 50% all of the time. Not very practical.

The battery degrades faster if kept at 100%.

In theory, 10% or 20% is less damaging to your battery than 100%, so keeping it at 100% for several hours every night is (in theory) worse than letting it sit for those hours at a spot more in the middle of its charge.

I generally do not charge my phone overnight, but sometimes I do. Normally, I stick it on the charger when I wake up in the morning and start getting ready for the day. Usually, between that and the time spent charging in the car on the way to work, I'm usually full by the time I get to the office.

I usually only keep the phone for a year or so anyway, so most of this doesn't matter anyway.
 

John Yester

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iPhone and iPod touch: Charging the battery

Apple - Batteries - iPhone


Lithium-ion Batteries

Rechargeable lithium-based technology currently provides the best performance for your Apple notebook computer, iPod, iPhone, or iPad. You can also find this standard battery technology in many other devices. Apple batteries share the characteristics common to lithium-based technology in other devices. Like other rechargeable batteries, these batteries may eventually require replacement.
Standard Technology

Lithium-ion polymer batteries have a high power density that gives you a long battery life in a light package. And you can recharge a lithium-ion polymer battery whenever convenient, without requiring a full charge or discharge cycle.
Chart illustrating lithium-polymer battery voltage/cell and charge current over time during the fast and trickle charge stages


Standard Charging

Most lithium-ion polymer batteries use a fast charge to charge your device to 80% battery capacity, then switch to trickle charging. That’s about two hours of charge time to power an iPod to 80% capacity, then another two hours to fully charge it, if you are not using the iPod while charging. You can charge all lithium-ion batteries a large but finite number of times, as defined by charge cycle.

Charge Cycle. Using and recharging 100% of battery capacity equals one full charge cycle.

A charge cycle means using all of the battery’s power, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a single charge. For instance, you could listen to your iPod for a few hours one day, using half its power, and then recharge it fully. If you did the same thing the next day, it would count as one charge cycle, not two, so you may take several days to complete a cycle. Each time you complete a charge cycle, it diminishes battery capacity slightly, but you can put notebook, iPod, and iPhone batteries through many charge cycles before they will only hold 80% of original battery capacity.
Battery Replacement and Disposal

Rechargeable batteries have a limited number of charge cycles and may eventually need to be replaced and disposed of. For products with built-in lithium-ion polymer batteries, the batteries should be replaced only by Apple or an Apple authorized service provider. Apple and its authorized service providers will ensure the spent battery is recycled properly, since batteries should always be recycled or disposed separately from household waste. Learn more about Apple’s battery replacement options

Once an Apple product reaches the end of its useful life, Apple will help you recycle it responsibly. Learn more about Apple’s recycling program
How to Maximize Power Use

The length of time your battery will power your device depends on how you use it. For instance, watching a movie or playing a game will use up your notebook battery’s power more quickly than simple word processing. You can follow some easy steps to maximize your notebook, iPod, iPhone, or iPad battery life.
 

estroh

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Any thoughts on differences between charging the iPhone 5 using the included USB wall charger, or the iPad chargers? Would it hurt or help battery life since it has more wattage?
 

John Yester

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There is no problem charging an iPhone with a charger than can supply MORE current than the device needs.. Current is supplied on demand (unlike voltage). The iPhone charging circuit takes what it needs, not what is supplied.
 

Tanbam

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Any thoughts on differences between charging the iPhone 5 using the included USB wall charger, or the iPad chargers? Would it hurt or help battery life since it has more wattage?

The phone knows what kind of charger it's plugged into. It will only accept up to 500mA with a regular USB charger, 1000mA with the iPhone charger, or 1000mA with the iPad charger. It will probably also accept 1000mA from a Mac's USB port, too.

It is perfectly fine to use either charger for your phone.
 

Ipheuria

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Thanks for the info guys but I'm not trying to prove a point. It is my own personal experiment to see if I will get better battery life or a more stable OS by using it in a different way than I usually do. My phone is usually on 24-7 unless for some reason I need to reboot which doesn't happen often. Since I don't need it as an alarm I'm testing out if there is any difference if I shut it off at night and instead of charging it overnight just charge it when it runs down. I know it doesn't need conditioning and I'm not trying to tell anyone this is the way to get great battery life. I also am not trying to squeeze every last drop of battery life. I used to turn my screen to the dimmest setting I could stand, take off my push settings, etc. Then I realized what the hell is the point of having a smartphone if you don't enjoy the use of it. So I just put everything at a convenient setting for me and when it needs charging I charge it.

Anyway unfortunately due to my JB tweaks I have lost the battery usage stats :0( However I took it off the charger yesterday at full charge at 1:30PM it has not been on a charger since and I have been using it just like normal except for using toggles to turn my Wifi and Data radios off/on whenever I'm using one or the other. So I'm at 55% right now by 1:30PM today it will have been 24 hours straight we'll see how much % I'm at then.
 

Ipheuria

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well my experiment was a success :) There is very little difference but there is a slight difference and I am gonna just continue using this approach. It leaves me with the most usable amount of battery life during the time when I need it. I don't know if what made the difference was turning the radios on/off depending on when I'm in Wifi or outside using data. Like I said this was just to satisfy my own curiousity. I'm not trying to convince anyone of anything or that this is the right way to get the best life out of your battery. I just thought it would be neat to share what I'm doing and what happened.

Previously
iPhone goes on charge at 10:30PM and charges until 6:10AM
100% at 6:10AM I use it and at noon it's usually at about 30-40%
I charge it while having lunch so by 1PM it's usually in the 90s if not fully charged
I use it until I get home at 6:30PM and by then it's usually in the 60% range and lasts until 10:30PM when it goes back on the charger at 30%

Yesterday
Charged up to 100% off charger at 1:30PM
Regular use went to bed turned the iPhone off at 10:30 with 70%
Woke up at 6:10AM turned the iPhone on and use it like usual
At 1:30, 24 hours later it was at 35%

I have rarely ever gotten 24 straight hours between charges and I certainly wasn't getting that before. Like I said maybe if I did it the same way I have been previously but turning the radios on/off it would make a difference. It doesn't really matter because like I said I'm not trying to prove anything this is just for my own curiousity. I like this schedule because it leaves me with the most usable time on battery and I don't need to charge it as often.
 

l.i bruce fan

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So while at work in the a.m. are you using it while plugged in? That is probably why you're getting more use out of the "Battery"? Just wondering...

well my experiment was a success :) There is very little difference but there is a slight difference and I am gonna just continue using this approach. It leaves me with the most usable amount of battery life during the time when I need it. I don't know if what made the difference was turning the radios on/off depending on when I'm in Wifi or outside using data. Like I said this was just to satisfy my own curiousity. I'm not trying to convince anyone of anything or that this is the right way to get the best life out of your battery. I just thought it would be neat to share what I'm doing and what happened.

Previously
iPhone goes on charge at 10:30PM and charges until 6:10AM
100% at 6:10AM I use it and at noon it's usually at about 30-40%
I charge it while having lunch so by 1PM it's usually in the 90s if not fully charged
I use it until I get home at 6:30PM and by then it's usually in the 60% range and lasts until 10:30PM when it goes back on the charger at 30%

Yesterday
Charged up to 100% off charger at 1:30PM
Regular use went to bed turned the iPhone off at 10:30 with 70%
Woke up at 6:10AM turned the iPhone on and use it like usual
At 1:30, 24 hours later it was at 35%

I have rarely ever gotten 24 straight hours between charges and I certainly wasn't getting that before. Like I said maybe if I did it the same way I have been previously but turning the radios on/off it would make a difference. It doesn't really matter because like I said I'm not trying to prove anything this is just for my own curiousity. I like this schedule because it leaves me with the most usable time on battery and I don't need to charge it as often.
 

Ipheuria

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Nope the only time it is on the charger is when I say charging or goes on the charger. I think more than likely turning the Wifi and LTE radios on and off via toggles is really what makes the difference but I like it because it leaves me with full battery life at all times when it is in use.

Previously
iPhone goes on charge at 10:30PM and charges until 6:10AM
charge at noon by 1PM it's usually in the 90s if not fully charged
10:30PM back on the charger at 30%

Yesterday
Charged up to 100% off charger at 1:30PM
Regular use turn iPhone off at 10:30 with 70%
6:10AM turn the iPhone on and use it like usual
At 1:30, 24 hours later it was at 35% back on the charger
 

nyc_rock

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The battery absolutely behaves differently depending on when you charge. If you plug your phone in with more than 50% remaining, the Iphone will come off the 100% charge level within a few minutes of being unplugged. If you plug your phone in with less than 15% charge then it will stay on 100% for a few hours after being unplugged. I see this daily with my iphone. Now, at the end of the day, I think the charge lasts about the same, but from a standing start, it appears that charging only when your battery % is very low, yields better initial stamina.
 

estroh

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I know when I'm plugged in overnight the battery is at 92% in about an hour. Otherwise, it can take a little over two hours to get to the same point. I don't know if it affects overall battery life or just the self meter since I don't check with an outside battery app
 

eve6er69

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I don't understand how there are so many contradicting battery solutions. People say lithium ion batteries don't have memory like old batteries and the charge doesn't matter but how come when you buy a battery accessory like a seidio battery they tell you to plug it in and charger it for 8hrs ?


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John Yester

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Although it is probably not necessary nowadays, I like to fully discharge the device, then charge it overnight (so it gets back up to 100% and tops off), then cycle it that way 2/3 times, so properly "condition" the battery, as I don't 100% trust the conditioning done before shipping.

Just as a side note, most of the battery conditioning lore is coming from way back in the bad ol' nicad days (probably 1990's), when you HAD to 100% discharge/recharge the battery, and make sure it didn't overcharge or undercharge, else it would not be "conditioned" properly, and it had a permanently reduced max charge. Nowadays, expecially with Lion, it is not necessary, and may even be harmful to fully discharge/recharge cycle EVERY time you use it. The first few times it's probably best to do it to fully condition the battery, but beyond that, it really does nothing.
 

Ipheuria

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I'm not trying to convince anyone of anything. This is my personal opinion but I think that today's issues people have with battery life in the majority of cases is not caused by battery or the devices but instead by people's habits. It is convenient to charge the battery overnight while we sleep so people leave the devices on the charger for 6-8 hours or more. It is my personal opinion that something in that length of time whether it's over charging or whatever the battery doesn't truly charge fully. Yes I know when the battery is charged the circuit stops charging and trickle charges blah, blah, blah but how do we know it is 100% efficient? Anyway my point is that switching to this new routine has surprised me on a few occasions. Whether it's the fact that during the day I'm able to unplug when the device is at full charge instead of it sitting for hours. I don't know but yesterday my iPhone was off the charger at 2PM fully charged and along with regular use on the way home I used the Personal Hotspot to use my iPad. The phone dropped from 92% to 85% by the time I was done and at 10:30 when I powered it off it was at 52% instead of the usual 70%. Well since 2PM yesterday I still haven't charged it and now at 1PM it is at 30%. I fully expected it to need to be charged a lot sooner but it surprised the hell out of me.
 

mumfoau

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This seems like an approach that would put you at a place where during the day your device is ALWAYS well charged and then during times when you are more apt to be near a charger (home or work) is when the battery would be low. Make sense?

I'm gonna try this on my SIII

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mumfoau

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Try it and let me know I'll love to see what happens for other people out of curiousity.

This is what I got on my GSIII. I unplugged 96% late last night and powered down. Plugging in now for about a 1/2 to get me through till bed time.

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