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Battery life weakest spot, study finds, 4G smartphone users particularly grumpy about it

Posted: , by Daniel P.

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Battery life weakest spot, study finds, 4G smartphone users particularly grumpy about it
Forget fancy designs, number of apps, HD screens and multicore chipsets - the make or break it moment in phone customer satisfaction turns out to be battery life.

For 7, 080 smartphone owners, surveyed by J.D. Power and Associates between July and December of last year, battery performance rated 6.9 on a 10 scale, which made it the least satisfying aspect of their devices, and one of the very few that is actually declining in satisfaction ratings on average now.

And satisfaction is not even spread out equally among users - 4G smartphone owners are particularly grumpy about battery life, as can be expected. Their handsets scored 6.1 out of 10 in that respect, while 3G-only phones had 6.9 out of 10.

Understandable, given that 4G smartphones, especially the LTE ones, tend to be more decked out with features like multicore chipsets and HD screens, which are battery-hogs in their turn.

source: JDPower

29 Comments
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posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:02 11

1. petermania (Posts: 4; Member since: 16 Mar 2012)


so tired of hearing whining about battery life. These devices do a whole lot of stuff, and people use them like crazy, most laptops don't stay on for more than 2 or 3 hours off the charger and no one complains about that. It is expected and normal for these phones to die pretty quickly, if you don't like it don't get one, or get a razr maxx like i did because the battery life is amazing!

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:41

6. yt6nin (Posts: 100; Member since: 16 Nov 2011)


how many hrs do you get from the maxx on a fully charged battery under moderate to heavy use??? moderate being use of wifi or data to surf the web and use apps that require internet, and listening to music for a little bit, and may be throw in some gaming, if you do any gaming... I'm really curious since I've read an article, I think on phonearena claiming that it could last 19~21hrs off a charge... =)

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 12:15 1

11. jldleo (Posts: 32; Member since: 09 Aug 2011)


I would consider my usage moderate to heavy. I talk on the phone alot and am on the web alot. I have never gotten less than 20+ hours and usually get around 24 on lighter days. I wouldn't even consider getting another phone that won't get me the same battery life in the future.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 15:39

19. nnaatthhaannx2 (Posts: 820; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)


no way, i start at 100% in the morning and use wifi for about an hour.
then i use 3g for around another hour throughout the day, and then 2 more hours of wifi at home again.
by the end, im at 30%.
maybe 1 call and 50 texts.

just from my basic tests. and yes, i do have the razr maxx.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 16:38

20. Whateverman (Posts: 3187; Member since: 17 May 2009)


That sounds like a defective phone. I had the same issue with the battery draining within a couple hours but i just got my brand new replacement today since I was still within my 14 days. I would call in and get that thing swapped out ASAP.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:04 12

2. Gawain (Posts: 342; Member since: 15 Apr 2010)


Studies that point out the obvious... ;-P

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:21 1

3. PAPINYC (Posts: 2189; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)


I wish someone would put J.D. Douchebags outta' bizness'; after all, they probably still use Blackberrys.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:29 2

4. barenstam (Posts: 5; Member since: 09 Jan 2012)


Easy solution....Razr Maxx

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:39

5. yt6nin (Posts: 100; Member since: 16 Nov 2011)


thanks to the large, embedded battery!

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 16:41

21. Whateverman (Posts: 3187; Member since: 17 May 2009)


Even with that big battery, its still slimmer than any other 4g phone except the OG Droid Razr, and just about every 3G phone out there. So it's still a win-win. :)

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:45 2

7. jaytai0106 (Posts: 1200; Member since: 30 Mar 2011)


What a waste of study... if Razr Maxx would come to at&t I would get one too! But too bad... High end smart phones are like high end car with hugh engine. They have the power and performance but they just love to suck that gas tank dry.

posted on 17 Mar 2012, 08:30 1

29. cellgeek82 (Posts: 518; Member since: 20 Dec 2009)


Why have a RAZR Maxx on AT&T? Their network sucks! I've had AT&T before, believe me you won't get the phone's full potential on a sucky network.

posted on 17 Mar 2012, 10:03

30. jaytai0106 (Posts: 1200; Member since: 30 Mar 2011)


I had Verizon for about 5 yrs and loved it everywhere else, but my house. I had about 1 signal at most all the time. I dropped call constantly and some are important work calls. I do work from home so that became a hassle after a while. On top of that, I just didn't have usage for my house phone anymore. So dropped my house phone and switched from Verizon to At&t. I am not going to argue Verizon has better network right now and its LTE coverage is f-ing kickass. However, for where I live right now I just have to survive with At&t... What made me mad was if I would walk out of the house and walk just a block I would have full signal with Verizon... wtf

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:45 3

8. tward291 (Posts: 559; Member since: 14 Feb 2012)


no the solution is to stop watching porn on your phone

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 11:52

9. Jeradiah3 (Posts: 963; Member since: 11 Feb 2010)


I admit that i used to complain about the battery on my Inspire, but i bought the PowerSkin and dealt with it. YES, we have to keep our charger cables when we're out and about, but thats the price we pay for wanting a phone that does EVERYTHING LOL. the real problem are the companies that make the batteries because with the emergence of LTE and the introduction of phones like the Galaxy Note (5.3" screen) and the Droid Razr Maxx (4.7" screen), they have to make less energy consuming batteries because its not going to get any better

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 13:17 1

14. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


the Droid Razr Maxx has a 4.3 screen

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 12:12 2

10. 14545 (Posts: 1067; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)


If companies would wise up and just put 2500 or so mAh batteries in their phones it wouldn't be a big deal. Instead of focusing on being the "thinnest" and whatever, focus on the best user experience. That includes battery life. And to the person who says their laptops gets only 2-3 hours of battery life, it's time to upgrade. I get 7-8 and that is not moderate usage either.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 12:56

12. NLiveris (Posts: 10; Member since: 13 Feb 2012)


My Razr Maxx easily goes 45 to 60 hours on a single charge. My wife is constantly on Facebook, listening to music, YouTube, etc, averages 45 hours per charge. It's so nice to never need to worry about the battery anymore. I feel like I'm in the future with this phone. LTE is amazingly fast as I regularly get 29Mbps down, 11Mbps up, here in downtown Chicago. I feel bad for friends who have the Galaxy Nexus and only get 12 hours on a charge. Ouch. The Maxx's 3800mAh battery makes everything a non-issue. I go to sleep with the phone at 100% and I wake up in the morning at 96%. I don't use any of those battery and data-saving SmartActions, I prefer to be connected 24/7. Go with the Razr Maxx and never worry about battery life again.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 13:25 1

15. CivicSi89 (Posts: 348; Member since: 23 Jul 2011)


haha same here man. I love the LTE In Chicago. its awesome not having to worry about battery life is awesome! I just wish the LTE service would work more in the Red And Blue line Subways. haha

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 13:57

16. 14545 (Posts: 1067; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)


It's 3300. Anyway, if the phone wasn't so ungodly unconfortable, then I would probably consider it. But I hate the way it feels in my hand, not to mention the crap pentile screen(which I thought was overblown until I had the bionic) and the radically reduced Blur. If they would slim the edges down a bit and make it a tad thicker, I wouldn't mind it.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 12:58

13. atheisticemetic (Posts: 377; Member since: 18 Dec 2011)


more evidence of sales reps not showing their customers how to improve their battery performance. Turn off Wifi when you dont use it...leaving your GPS on is going to kill your battery, and toggle 4g on and off!

get a Razr Maxx or a external (portable) battery pack!

people are so dumb....*jumps off cliff*

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 13:59 1

17. 14545 (Posts: 1067; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)


Actually GPS has absolutely no effect as long as you aren't using an app that is constantly trying to find its location. I have verified this over many days using battery monitor. Wifi uses a little bit, but not enough worth mentioning.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 17:19

23. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


This is true about GPS...all things being equal. Being equal means there is no GPS bugs. There was one with the Droid X1 when it launched that caused battery drain even when GPS wasnt in use.

One problem with GPS is certain apps and widgets use it and you dont really know until after the fact. But the GPS icon should show up to let you know its in use.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 14:52

18. skymitch89 (Posts: 1021; Member since: 05 Nov 2010)


4G is only a weak point for my Evo Shift when I'm actually connected to 4G.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 17:09

22. dgjr (Posts: 4; Member since: 19 Mar 2009)


I have a WP on T-Moble and I have no problems with 4G battery life. I don't see the big deal.....

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 19:05 1

27. rallyguy (Posts: 524; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)


Thats because you don't have real 4G. Wimax and LTE 4G require an extra antenna. No offense, but you have extra fast 3G.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 17:20

24. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


Right now...4G is a battery drain, no 2 ways around it. I heard that 3G was bad on battery lifer when it first launched.

So we might can chalk this up to LTE. 4G growing pains. Better LTE, 4G tech is coming for our phones, tablets.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 19:01 1

26. rallyguy (Posts: 524; Member since: 13 Mar 2012)


So much depends on your signal strength. If you drive around most of the day with a good signal, it will last much longer than in an office with a poor signal.

posted on 16 Mar 2012, 19:07

28. jroc74 (Posts: 4720; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


This is true too. At my kids mother house my phone can last all day, 24 hours. At work....in a weaker reception area...I'm lucky to get 8 hours.

What area you are in is a hidden battery drainer that some, most ppl dont realize.

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