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Would you sacrifice Quad HD display resolution on flagships for better battery life?


It's a sad fact of life, but flagship phones have much worse battery endurance than their midrange counterparts with a similar battery size, and the bright Quad HD resolution displays they sport seem to be the culprit. The marriage of a decent battery capacity, and a 1080p display seem to be the winning tradeoff in battery endurance and pixel density these days (well, save for the OnePlus 3T), since the Quad HD flagships are all clustered in the 6-9 hours range of screen-on time in our proprietary script. That goes for the new LG G6, for last year's Galaxy S7 and S7 edge, and for basically every Quad HD handset whose battery hovers in the 3000 mAh - 3500 mAh range, and they are the majority.

Samsung, for instance, being both the producer and the assembler of the screens, chipsets and memory of its new A-series, has managed to optimize them better in terms of power consumption than other brands that don't make everything in-house, so they clocked 11-13 hours of screen-on time in our test with those battery capacities. Even when vertical parts integration is not the case, 1080p phones are still stealing the battery show. Take the Honor 8, for instance - it scores nine admirable hours of screen-on time in our test, and consistently carries us through two full days with normal use, but has a "mere" 5.2" 1080p display, backed by a 3000 mAh battery. While that endurance is 30% less than the A-series, it's still 30% more than the LG G6 or the Galaxy S7 with their 2440p panels.

That is why we wanted to ask you how important are those high pixel densities for you, and whether do you think it is worth sacrificing roughly 30% of your potential battery life just to have a Quad HD or higher resolution display with 500+ ppi pixel density. Just imagine the Galaxy S8 with a 1080p panel and screen-on time north of 10 hours on our test, ensuring two days of good use out of it. Granted, the S8 will be the first to land with a 10nm chipset, plus there might be new, more frugal AMOLED display tech in it, thus it could still clock as much, yet on a lower screen resolution that same setup would inevitable produce longer battery life, so tell us what do you prefer in the poll below.

Would you sacrifice Quad HD resolution on flagships for better battery life?

Yes, in a heartbeat

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Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) specs
  • Display 5.2 inches 1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 16 MP (Single camera) 16 MP front
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 7 Octa 3GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh
  • OS Android 8.0 Oreo
Samsung Galaxy S7 specs
  • Display 5.1 inches 2560 x 1440 pixels 60Hz Refresh rate
  • Camera 12 MP (Single camera) 5 MP front
  • Hardware Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 4GB RAM
  • Storage 32GB, microSDXC
  • Battery 3000 mAh
  • OS Android 8.0 Oreo Samsung TouchWiz UI

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