battery

wpid-wp-1416717300177.pngI recently noticed that my Android phone was draining battery a lot faster than usual. So I checked out the battery page and discovered that Google Search was my top source of battery drain, more than Screen! That’s insane. None of my settings had changed so I didn’t understand why this was suddenly happening. Rebooting didn’t fix the problem.

Google Search was definitely the cause. From its app page, I saw that that Google Search was using up to 500 MB of storage, and was constantly restarting every minute or so and rebuilding that massive index. No wonder it was taking so much battery!

Searching online showed that other Android users has/had the problem, and that it wasn’t limited to my OnePlus One. So here’s my fix, after a painful day of research and experimentation:

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It’s fascinating to read tech pundits around the web rationalize their cognitive dissonance in declaring the iPhone’s 3.5-inch screen size as perfect once upon a time, backtracking to 4-inches, and now praising something larger.

The most influential opinion on this seems to be Marco Arment, who explained away the logical inconsistency by characterizing phablets in 2011 as mediocre. That Apple fans confused execution with concept, that it required Apple’s flawless execution — possible only today — to reveal the concept’s true value.

It’s an interesting theory…except it’s totally wrong.

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I don’t even know why Apple bothered with the iPhone 6, because it will go the way of the iPhone 5c: a niche product; a consolation prize; the budget choice for Apple loyalists; something you get begrudgingly and regret later.

One estimate is that the iPhone 5S sold 3x better than the 5c. I expect a similar breakdown between the iPhone 6 and the 6 Plus. OK, so the iPhone 6 is not dead on arrival, but it will be the ugly step-sister to Cinderella.

Except for personal preference over size and price, the iPhone 6 Plus is categorically the superior phone.

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I’ve heard some depressing things as an entrepreneur in the mobile space.

  • This app has too many animations which drains battery, so I don’t use it.
  • Using Wi-Fi drains battery life, so I just rely on 3G.
  • Bluetooth drains a lot of battery life so I turn it off, even though I wear a Fitbit everyday. I just turn it on once a day at home to sync.
  • I don’t download apps because I’m afraid they will kill my battery.

The first is clearly ridiculous, yet came from an intelligent person. Your phone will actually last longer with a stable Wi-Fi connection, and Bluetooth doesn’t drain battery at all unless used. Even then, it’s minimal. The last complaint is such a sad thing for us in the industry to hear.

The fear of running out of battery wields such an extraordinary influence over how we use smartphones. We benchmark every task according to how much battery it takes. We are never too far from a charger, and many of us carry a heavy, cumbersome power bank.

I have good news: we are on the verge of true all day battery life.

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