Apple's secret sauce behind the record 11 Pro Max battery life is called A13

Apple's secret sauce behind the record 11 Pro Max battery life is called A13
Nothing beats the good ol' teardown treatment to learn what Apple has put in an iPhone, given that it never discloses actual capacity or RAM amount of its handsets, preferring to talk about video or audio playback duration lengths instead.

Even those limited stats, however, hinted that there is something going on with the 11 Pro Max battery pack, as instead of 15 hours of video playback that its predecessor XS Max is good for, the Pro Max is listed with a 20 hours endurance on a charge.

Most of the increase is due to the much larger - 3969 mAh vs 3179 mAh battery capacity - but the new second-gen 7nm chipset apparently brings another part of that difference. The den of geeks over at Anandtech ran a few specialized processor benchmarks over the A13 as part of their deep dive into the chipset. 

As you can see from the comparison run above, Apple's newest processor has a significantly lower power draw than the A12 or the A11, all the while it delivers slightly higher performance, and that's especially valid for the squad of four efficiency cores that run most of the daily tasks on your iPhone. 

They are more efficient and powerful than the stock Cortex-A55 cores that most Android-bound chipsets receive from processor makers, which explains how Apple finally caught up to competing high-end phones in battery life with the humbler pack capacities that it uses.

Apple made the Pro Max slightly chubbier than the XS Max, and removed the 3D Touch layer from the display package, allowing it to fit a battery pack that is thicker and larger than the one it has in the Pro Max predecessor. Coupled with the impressive A13's power envelope, these decisions mean that you don't have to worry if your iPhone will get you through a heavy day of usage now. That, and the fast charger that finally comes bundled in the box.

Related phones

iPhone 11 Pro
  • Display 5.8" 1125 x 2436 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 12 MP front
  • Processor Apple A13 Bionic, Hexa-core, 2650 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB
  • Battery 3046 mAh



1. AciMars

Posts: 25; Member since: Jul 04, 2013

No.. it's bigger battery contributed most of battery life gain... Only 5% from SOC, much higher improvement from display idle power reduction OLED panel.

30. vincelongman

Posts: 5745; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Also PA ignored that the A76's are still more efficient than the A13's Lightning cores Which explains why Apple poached Mike Filippo who was the lead architect behind the Arm 's A72 and A76/A77/A78 Can't wait to see the A77 cores in the Snapdragon 865 and Exynos 9830

2. Yousefjaber206

Posts: 117; Member since: Jan 09, 2018

Nah! It's the bigger batteries!

4. toukale

Posts: 662; Member since: Jun 10, 2015

If it were just the bigger battery, how do you explain the iPhone handily beating other devices with a lot bigger battery capacity.

16. OneLove123

Posts: 1244; Member since: Aug 28, 2018

Different os dude!! Some Screens are bigger too with a higher resolution.

36. cheetah2k

Posts: 2288; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

CPU throttling

3. pimpin83z

Posts: 595; Member since: Feb 08, 2019

"Apple's secret sauce behind the record 11 Pro Max battery life..." Again, record to who or where? Guinness? JD Power? The Olympics? Or just iPhone users?

5. midan

Posts: 3097; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

Record among all the most popular phones tested? I mean doesn't note 10+ have very good battery life? And among best if not best? After this video it's hard to believe that's really big difference and something which propably not many expected against note 10+

32. LordDavon

Posts: 168; Member since: Sep 19, 2011

Thank you for that link. I've been deciding between the Note 10+, iPhone 11 Pro Max and Google Pixel 4 XL. I almost went with the iPhone last year, but got the Note 9 instead. While I like the Note 9, I'm on my second due to a warranty swap. Actually, I've had warranty swaps on my Galaxy 8+ and S7 Edge also (my last 2 phones). I still have both the Galaxy 8+ and S7 Edge and the S7 has another swollen battery. So, I'm getting a bit tired of Samsung. That being said, I've been on the fence on upgrading to the iPhone 11 Pro Max. This video is leaning me more toward it.

37. cheetah2k

Posts: 2288; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

Still wont beat the Asus ROG 2.. 6000mah beast mode!

12. Vancetastic

Posts: 1698; Member since: May 17, 2017

It is the best battery life that an iPhone has ever had. Perhaps that is the meaning?

6. User123456789

Posts: 1084; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

No, it is the lower resolution FHD and almost 4000 mAh. 11 Pro Max = 3.338496 pixels Note 10+ = 4.377. 600 pixels Xperia 1 = 6.312.960 pixels For curiosity : Z5 Premium = 8.294.400 pixels Any phone would easily last same with this hardware. No matter from Huawei, Sony, Samsung, OnePlus etc ....

7. kiko007

Posts: 7520; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

It what universe is the Pro Max "below full HD"?

8. kiko007

Posts: 7520; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

Oops... read that wrong. My bad. Still, doesn't the Note 10 default to 1080P anyway? Also I'd like someone with an understanding of display tech to explain just how much display resolution effects battery performance.

11. User123456789

Posts: 1084; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

It is the resolution apps run, you cant change the screen. Otherwise parts would be black. You cant do on phone same you do on windows pc.

9. c.m.s

Posts: 239; Member since: Dec 10, 2017

P30 Pro, lower resolution, bigger battery compared to iPhone Pro Max still loses out in drain tests. Of course it's a combination of a lot of things, were the SoC efficiency definitely has a part.

13. User123456789

Posts: 1084; Member since: Feb 22, 2019

It also counts the way you work with screen. Why do Htc phones with almost 4000 have issues while other LCD phones with less battery last more?

15. c.m.s

Posts: 239; Member since: Dec 10, 2017

You are making up excuses. Again, what decides a phone battery life is a combination of many things, both hardware and software. Battery size is of course the most decisive part but just as display matters so does the efficiency of the SoC, the A13 has improved upon that compared to the A12, that is a fact.

17. OneLove123

Posts: 1244; Member since: Aug 28, 2018

You won’t know how big of an efficiency it is unless you put the same battery size in the A12.

19. c.m.s

Posts: 239; Member since: Dec 10, 2017

Yes we do under controlled tests, read the Anandtech article, A13 quite an improvement over A12 on that point. How much it matter in actual time in an drain test... of course we can not know that since there are alot of factors included in that. But the point is that the more efficient A13 _do_ have an effect on battery life, that is a fact. Not just screen resolution and battery size as "User123456789" is stating.

14. midan

Posts: 3097; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

There's battery test at YouTube showing resolution doesn't affect that much to battery life, but good try!

21. CreeDiddy

Posts: 2270; Member since: Nov 04, 2011

You're argument should read...does your eye see a difference in screen quality of (11 Pro Max) 2688 x 1242 vs (Note 10+) 3,040 x 1,440. The answer is no. So why is a 4k phone needed if batter will be a large source of drain?

10. HNIC215

Posts: 9; Member since: Oct 17, 2019

Whether it's the larger battery or the A13... Battery life has been amazing so far! I can only imagine how crazy it will become once Apple releases their Smart Battery Case for these new phones.

18. Jrod99

Posts: 776; Member since: Jan 15, 2016

Good grief. What a behemoth of a smart phone. Still though staying with the XS Max.

20. whatev

Posts: 2396; Member since: Oct 28, 2015

Of course, the A13 is the best chip on the planet right now, duh

23. JCASS889

Posts: 594; Member since: May 18, 2018

Best "arm based mobile chip" let's not get ahead of our selves.

22. darkkjedii

Posts: 31529; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

The Pro Max has some insane battery life, that’s just as awesome as its camera. Let’s be honest, and real here, Apple did good, by going with function over form. I think Apple should’ve given it 6 gigs of RAM though, cause you do get hella reloads.

24. chris2k5

Posts: 291; Member since: Nov 17, 2012

Apple beats all Android phones at battery. Regardless of whether it’s due to capacity, OS, processor.

25. darkkjedii

Posts: 31529; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

That's a bald face lie. Plenty of YouTube vids confirm your lie.

26. Techno4

Posts: 16; Member since: Jul 31, 2019

Lol man you need your meds the ROG II says hi to your apple beats all android phones smh.

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