Smartphone Battery Power Efficiency by ViserMark
Updated: Mar 30
Many of you who have been following ViserMark for the last 12 months have noticed that we had a big revamp on our Smartphone Battery Life score and performance.
We have also used this opportunity to the introduction of the much-anticipated industry-first Battery Power Efficiency Label for smartphone devices.
Introducing The Power Efficiency Label- How power-efficient is a Smartphone?
It simply means maximising the performance of a Smartphone while reducing the amount of energy it consumes, with minimal impact on battery life. It is calculated using Battery Life and Battery Capacity. This is expressed in “Leaves" and reflects a rating between 1 being the least and 5 being the most power-efficient. The most battery efficient device will provide good battery life and reduce the number of times the battery will need to be charged which harms its longevity.
Learn More About The ViserMark Power Efficiency Label
As we rely more and more on our devices to connect to the internet, stream movies, work, manage our fitness and health, do our banking together with several other aspects of our life it is not surprising that battery life becomes a key factor for smartphone selection. Battery life is the single most important aspect of the mobile user experience.
As consumers continue to move more and more activities over to smartphones it is not surprising that Smartphone penetration is still on the rise and according to Statista:
38% of the world’s total population owned a smart device in 2018, and the smartphone penetration rate has continued climbing, reaching 46.5% in 2020. By 2025, it is forecast that almost 87% of all mobile users in the United States will own a smartphone, an increase from the 27% of mobile users in 2010.
As we become more reliant on smartphones and end-users demand larger batteries and better battery life, we have also seen a huge increase in battery size. According to Android Authority, the average battery capacity for smartphones was around 3,400mAh in 2013. Towards the end of 2020, the average battery size is now between 4,000mAh to 5,000mAh.
Statista has published last February 2021 the shipments per battery capacity in India in 2020 vs 2019 and the number of devices with 5,000mAh a battery has almost tripled in number. Most smartphones launched in India during the first half of 2020 had a battery capacity of over 4,000 milliampere hours. 25 smartphones had batteries between 4,000 mAh to 4,999 mAh, while 20 of them had a battery capacity of over 5,000 mAh. This contrasted with the trend of the preceding year, where most smartphones were below 4,000 mAh.
A similar trend is observed across the world and is expected to continue further. It is not long until the standard size battery will be 6,000+ mAh. This trend seems to be fuelled by two main drivers one being the consumers demanding better battery life and the other is technology advancements with breakthrough materials like graphene which is expected to be a game-changer.
Will this Improve the Battery Life Performance?
We discovered through our ViserMark findings, when testing over 100+ smartphone devices, just how the range of battery sizes had shifted. As the graph demonstrates below, although fewer smartphones were launched, they were designed with larger battery capacity to provide better performance for the end-user.
Does a Bigger Battery Mean Longer Battery Life?
Increasing the battery size is expected to make a difference in the battery life but from what we have seen in the last 12 months in ViserMark this is not necessarily always the case. Simply increasing the battery size without further optimisations will not result in optimum battery performance.
With the introduction of the Power Efficiency Label, we can see how well the software optimised to utilise this battery capacity. In our lab, we have tested devices with a 5,000mAh battery capacity that last between 3.5 days of use to a very disappointing 1.5 days of use. The big performance gap has a lot to do with the effort each manufacturer had put in their R&D to search and implement a better battery life autonomy for their devices. Chips and operating systems are intended to become more energy-efficient. However, more effort needs to be made in improving the power management of the device than relying on a larger battery size that utilises more precious metals harming the environment.
So when you are looking for your next smartphone make sure you check the latest results from ViserMark in our Battery Performance Ranking Table: