One of the features of mobile devices that’s not advanced as fast as other pieces has been battery life. Yet, every once and a while there is a device maker that does something neat on this account that makes it all worth it.
Nokia’s E-Series devices have always been great at this. I remember with the E71 how I was amazed that it was able to go 2-3 days on a charge, with such a thin form factor. I was plum amazed. And as I learned more about Nokia’s E-Series and the benchmarks their engineers just seemed to always run past for each new device, I became more impressed at them, despite the fact that bactter technology hadn’t gotten any better.
When I got my hands on the N8 and then the C7, it looked as if the E-Series battery performance doctrine had been propagated to all of their devices (halleuah). I was pleasantly surprised at the N8 having solid battery life, despite not having the biggest battery that Nokia would offer – though I will admit, if they had this performance out of this battery, the “hero” battery (1500mAh) would have just put this over the top for too many folks.
Now living with the N8 as my personal device, I’m enjoy its battery evangelism. I no longer need to plug my mobile into the charger at night because it lasts the night just fine no matter what percentage is left when I sleep. Charging time is 1-2hrs max – amazing. And in normal use, I’m getting a full day and a half.
Last night I inadvertently left Maps on all night. I had enabled “power saving” mode, but that was still an active GPS polling all night. I awoke to see only 10% gone from my battery. When I realized what I did, I simply turned off Maps, and went to my normal morning routine of reading feeds and tweets for a few hours. It took a few (2ish) hours before getting the “enable power saving” warning. But man, it rocked. I got about 30 more minutes before it cut off on me.
Charging took 2hrs, I pulled out my N95 that I just got back to tied me over till it was done. That device too also has seemed to have a great battery in my recent usages.
Suffice to say, battery life can be improved. But, whatever Nokia’s team (and RIM’s, and Apple’s) are doing, more companies need to do this. We should not be sitting in the midst of such a revelation of technological prowess, but then need to be tethered to some power outlet within a few hours of being “blessed.” There’s nothing redeeming about that.
What we need is this kind of attention to power usage. And then we could do more to life mobile-enabled lives, because we are worrying less about the battery dying, and more about capturing the next moment to share and connect with others.