Every year, manufacturers have been coming out with cutting-edge features on their latest flagship smartphones. However, one area where there’s seldom seen any improvement is battery life. Brands have been packing in bigger batteries to increase the stamina of a smartphone, but there’s hardly any improvement seen towards increasing the power consumption efficiency. And this has been now documented with proof — thanks to a report from The Washington Post.
Geoffrey A, a journalist working with The Washington Post, has carried out a detailed battery drain test and put all his finding on a graph. Geoffrey used a light meter to measure the brightness level and a custom script to navigate websites from top to bottom automatically. While all of this was going, he also measured the time for how long it took for each smartphone to discharge completely.
The results were almost similar to what users have been complaining in the real world. For Google’s phones, last year’s Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL lasted longer on a single battery charge as compared to the new Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Similarly, Apple’s iPhone XS lost out to the iPhone X whereas the iPhone XS Max couldn’t las t as long as the iPhone 8 Plus.
Sadly, the test didn’t include predecessors for the Galaxy S9 and Note 9. However, Samsung's Note 9 with its bigger 4000mAh battery outlasted the Galaxy S9+ with a 3500mAh battery. The Note 9 in our casual battery test also fared well against the Note 8, which had a paltry 3300mAh battery. Apple’s iPhone XR topped the chart for the longest stamina seen on a flagship-grade smartphone this year — thanks to a reasonably big battery, a low-resolution LCD display and an ultra power efficient iOS 12.
Newer flagship smartphones do offer an interesting proposition with never-before-seen features. However, their makers haven’t done enough to improve the power consumption efficiency, which results in shoving bigger batteries, indirectly affecting the aesthetics and user experience. Some of that inefficiency in the newer models can also be attributed to unpolished software with unknown bugs and issues.
Therefore, if you are looking to upgrade to a newer flagship but battery stamina is one of your primary concerns, then it’s advisable to hold on to your existing phone for a while until the newer models are given a bug-free software experience.