The humble marathon runner from Lenovo features a drool-worthy 4000 mAh juicer, and a sub-$250 price, while the rear is made entirely of etched aluminum. We also get stereo speakers and recording, as well as a big 5.3" HD display. Granted the S860 is on the hefty side, thanks to the enormous battery pack, but consider that you can expect 15-16 hours of screen-on time, and 3-4 days of average use on a charge, which is a remarkable achievement for a fully featured smartphone these days.
One of the largest batteries in a branded phone this side of the Ascend Mate phablet, an HD display "only", and a frugal Cortex-A7 processor sound like a winning combination for just $170 off-contract, and it is indeed so. The 4000 mAh juicer inside the metallic Lenovo P780 is good for 25 hours of talk time in 3G mode, and will last you almost 15 hours - twice the average screen-on time - while browsing or watching videos, meaning that with moderate usage you will squeeze three days out of a charge, which is very impressive. No wonder Kobe Bryant was booked to advertise it - it scores.
Out of the ones we've tested, the Ascend Mate 2 phablet climbed to the top of the list with its breathtaking 11 hours and 26 minutes of screen-on time, thanks to a 3900 mAh battery. The 6.1" HD display puts it in the niche device category, but if you are looking for a frugal big-screen device with excellent specs on a budget, the Ascend Mate 2 won't disappoint.
The T2 Ultra is one of the longest-lasting mobile device we've ever tested, with its 10+ hours of screen-on time – need we say more? Sony is renowned for the well-balanced battery consumption of its midrangers, which consistently score towards the top percentile in our battery test, but it outdid itself with the $400 phablet. The company promises the whopping 24 hours of talk time in 3G mode for the T2 Ultra, and almost a month and a half on standby, as well as 10 hours of HD video playback on a charge. Those numbers are way above the average, and should come as a hint that the T2 Ultra phablet performed very well on our own grueling battery test, too. In fact, we logged even more screen-on time than Sony cites, at 10 hours and 16 minutes, launching the T2 Ultra the device in the top three we've ever tested, tablets included. That's a great feature to have on a dual SIM Active handset, which sucks more juice out of the battery to maintain two networks at once, so if you are looking for a brand-name phablet that will last you up to three days with average usage, the T2 Ultra it is.
The Z3 Compact is not only the most powerful munchkin out there, but also the phone with one of the best battery lives we've experienced. Scoring a bit over 10 hours on our test is a remarkable achievement with this battery capacity, and we say kudos to Sony for being the phone maker that made two-day battery life possible out of our smartphones. Equipped with the same great specs as its larger sibling, the flagship Z3, the Compact version is the best mini phone you can buy at the moment.
With 9 hours and 35 minutes of screen-on endurance in our battery test out of the only 1830 mAh juicer, the midrange Lumia 635 is perhaps the longest-lasting phone relative to its battery capacity. Nokia outfitted the 4.5" Lumia 635, a subtle variant of the 630, with good ‘ol 4G LTE connectivity, and at the same time the Windows Phone 8.1 powered device sees improvements to its call quality to really deepen its worth for the budget-conscious consumer.
Despite having a larger and more pixel-dense display than the Z3 Compact, the Z3 flagship scores very close in battery life, making it the longest-lasting flagship currently on the market. With nine and a half hours in our test out of its 3200 mAh battery, it confirmed Sony's claims for a two-day battery, and did so in a thin and stylish form, which is spec'd-out and waterproof at that.
Outfitted with a 4.8" qHD display, quad-core Snapdragon 400 chip from Qualcomm and 1GB of RAM, along with an 8-megapixel Exmor RS sensor, the M2 will strike you as a very decent, middle-of-the-road handset. When you look at its battery life, however, it suddenly outpaces all of its midrange rivals, as it managed the crazy 9 hours and 19 minutes on our rigorous battery test.
The Mate7 is not only the best-looking and most compact for its screen size phablet, but behind its 6" frame beats a giant 4100 mAh heart, which lasts and lasts. The phone survived over nine hours in our battery test, making it the most enduring high-end phablet out there. You will also be pleased by its light aluminum unibody, great specs, and a fingerprint scanner on the back done right.
Notice a trend here? There are quite a few midrange Xperias present in the top 10 list of our battery endurance testing, and this fact comes to show that Sony has balanced very well the screen and processing power requirements, with the battery capacity in those phones. In second place of our phone list sits the Xperia C - a dual-SIM handset with modest 5" qHD display and a humble MediaTek chipset, coupled with a decent 2390 mAh battery - that screen managed to stay on close to 9 hours in our gruesome test, so you can't ask for much more at the $200 price tag, and it has very good call quality to boot.
Given the QHD phones before it, we were worried that the Note 4 flagship won't be up to par in battery life, but our test proved us wrong, as Samsung's 5.7" phablet managed 8 hours and 43 minutes, putting it just outside of the top 10 handsets we've tested, which is an amazing result, given the screen's resolution, and the phone's 3220 mAh battery capacity.
LG sneaks into the top 5 with the mini version of its popular G2 handset. The phone keeps the general shape of the flagship, as well as the signature keys on the back, but sports a 4.7” 540x960 pixels display, a basic Snapdragon 400 processor, and an 8 MP camera. That's a rather dramatic departure from the characteristics of the G2, but the G2 mini more than makes up for it with the excellent 8 hours and 32 minutes on our battery test.
Alcatel's first serious phablet - the 6" OneTouch Hero, did very well, too. With big screen usually comes a big battery, and the Hero doesn't disappoint - 3400 mAh is its norm. It justified its name by providing 8 hours and 11 minutes. Not only that, but it is also one of the thinnest and most compact phablets, with one of the best displays out there, so you can't go wrong with the Hero, if you are looking for a good phablet at an affordable price.
Exuding flagship perfection, the 8 hours and 10 minutes of screen-on time we got from the Xperia Z2 are even more impressive, considering that this is a top-shelf handset by anyone's standards, and with waterproof IP58 certification at that. Add a 5.2" Triluminos display, 3 GB of RAM, fast Snapdragon 801 processor, plus stereo speakers, and the Z2 is an all-around excellent package.
With 8 hours and 8 minutes of screen-on time on our test, the Moto E is the most enduring budget Android from a brand-name maker. For its $120 price off-contract you get a 4.3" qHD panel, Snapdragon 200 processor, and a decent 5 MP camera on the back.
The mighty 3610 mAh battery in the Oppo N1 phablet with rotating camera seems to do the trick, despite the 6" 1080p display and the fairly powerful chipset, as the handset clocked in more than 8 hours of battery life with us. Its size and flagship $550 price is not for everybody, though, so it's bound to stay a niche handset.
Samsung has placed a rather generous 3100 mAh battery pack in the Note 3 Neo, which sounds very promising for the resulting endurance. This is just shy of the Note 3's capacity, which has proven to be a marathon runner already. Samsung promises that the Note 3 Neo will be able to hold a charge for 18 hours of talk-time and 22.5 hours of stand-by time on a 3G network. Having completed our custom battery test, the Galaxy Note 3 Neo has proven to be a wonderful performer in the battery department, rivaling the Oppo N1 to the minute. With its sizable 3100 mAh unit, it has lasted the whopping 8 hours and 6 minutes - 2 hours more than the Note 3, which was already quite solid in this respect!
We welcomed another member of the 8+ club recently, as the affordable OnePlus One flagship managed to last the impressive 8 hours and 5 minutes with its screen on in our test. It's hard to get your hands on one still, but if you do, you will get top-notch specs, Cyanogen OS, and a fast recharge of the 3100 mAh battery.
Samsung took a design risk with the Alpha series for the first time in quite a while, and created a very pleasing, well-rounded handset that doesn't disappoint when it comes to camera and performance. In terms of battery life, it managed to survive 7 hours and 50 minutes, which, given the mere 1860 mAh battery, is a pretty great result.
Here's another little Sony that can. The Xperia E isn't going to wow you with specs, as it has a tiny 3.5" display and an old school Snapdragon processor, but the 1500 mAh juicer seems enough to power that combo for close to eight hours of screen-on time. It also offers excellent call quality, which is pretty important for a phone available in a dual SIM variation.
What? A blockbuster phone with a long-lasting battery you say? Yep, it's none other than the Galaxy S5 that managed the respectable 7 hours and 38 minutes of screen-on time in our grueling battery endurance run, which is a great result for any flagship. The notable thing with the Galaxy S5 is that it breaks the flagship record with "only" a 2800 mAh battery, surpassing even phablets with their huge 3000+ mAh juicers. Thus, there must be more at play than capacity alone here, and Samsung might have utilized additional battery-saving techniques from Lucid Logix for the first time in the S5.
During the phone's unveiling event, Samsung promised up to 10 hours of Internet browsing, 12 hours of HD movie watching, or 21 hours of 3G talk time on a charge, and we can attest that the Galaxy S5 meets and exceeds those promises. Manufacturers, as well as most third party services, measure battery life with the screens set at about 150 nits of brightness, while our routine script is run at 200 nits, and features mixed browsing and media display patterns. Those include a lot of white background, too, which AMOLED screens draw the most power to display, and still the S5 managed to break the flagship record.
HTC's first phablet, the 6" One Max, was born to run, it seems, as it clocked nearly seven and a half hours in our battery test, despite the 1080p display. The large 3300 mAh battery, as well as HTC's manufacturing prowess have been demonstrated with the phablet's endurance, but, same as with Oppo N1, the One Max's high-end pricing and gigantic size won't sell it many units, despite the cool fingerprint sensor on the back, and the BoomSound stereo speakers at the front.
Despite having a tad smaller battery capacity than the S5, the tough S5 Active scores just 20 minutes or so shorter battery life than Samsung's finest, yet it carries the same specs sheet.
Meizu has endowed the MX4 with a hearty, 3100 mAh battery pack. The unit is of the non-removable type (even though you can lift off the rear shell), so changing the battery in case of a problem won't be straightforward at all. Meizu's new flagship clocked 7 hours and 25 minutes on our custom battery life test, putting it in the same league with devices like the Galaxy S5 and the HTC One M8. In our own experience, the MX4 is a two-days-per-charge device, and that's awesome.
If you are looking for a great Android handset at a rock bottom price, look no further than the 200 USD or EUR Moto G. It has a nice, vibrant 4.5" HD display, and a merely 2070 mAh battery, which, however, goes a long way, lasting 7 hours and 12 minutes in our battery test.
HTC's new One M8 is the huge surprise in our updated roundup, as its neither a phablet, nor a midranger, but a flagship handset with 5" display, Snapdragon 801 processor, and a unique Duo Camera. Still, it managed to eke out as much battery life from its 2600 mAh juicer, as the humble Moto G - 7+ hours - which is an excellent achievement.
The results of the plastic version of the One M8, the One E8, closely mimic what you can expect from the aluminum flagship, with 7 hours and 12 minutes of screen on time in our test. The E8 eschews the Duo Camera for a more orthodox 13 MP shooter, and we can't say we are disappointed by that.
Don't laugh, as this 3" munchkin goes places. Equipped with a very low-res display and a 1200 mAh battery, the cheap Galaxy Pocket Neo budged just above the 7-hour mark in our testing, so you can toss this one as a burner in your glove compartment for exceptional situations, and be sure it will last quite a long time when needed.