Battery, battery, battery
The release of the Motorola RAZR MAXX caught my eye for one reason, and one reason only. The 3300mAh battery which can offer 17.6 hours talk time and up to 380 hours standby time. That is impressive for any phone, but for one that still comes in under 9mm deep is shocking.
I have used the normal RAZR and was surprised at how much battery life Motorola managed to squeeze out of a phone that is impossibly slim so expect this one to knock my socks off. The problem is that for most people, the battery specifications are the last thing they look at and this is why manufacturers are happy to produce phones that require a daily charge. This makes sense because size has been proven to be more important than battery for most users, but when you really think about it, that thinking is the wrong way round.
For the sake of 3mm and a few grams, the majority are happier to charge their phones every day. For me I would much rather never have to think about my battery life and have a slightly bigger phone because it can be so liberating. My Amazon Kindle is an extreme example, but so are many tablets. Every day I pick it up and just use it- the battery monitor in the top right-hand corner never gets looked at and it may receive a charge every 3 weeks if it is lucky. Battery life and charging are not even considered when using a Kindle and the same is true, to a lesser extent, for my iPad. It may be charged once a week and I know that either device will last a long plane journey for watching movies and many days of standard use.
Some of the older BlackBerry’s used to offer performance that would only require a charge every 3 days and of course the old Psion devices needed 2 AA batteries once a month if you were a power user. Battery life is an area that we have barely moved forward on. We have from a technical perspective and today’s mobile devices do a lot more than they used to, but the real life of batteries that users see has barely changed and in many cases reduced.
I say that the time has come for the battery to figure more prominently in the minds of smartphone manufacturers. Either make the jump and use some of the new technologies that are being built to improve battery and charging performance or add a ‘tiny’ amount of bulk to the devices so that they can last 3 days without the need for a charger.