The battery on Apple’s iPhone 8 is up to 8 per cent smaller than that on last year’s iPhone 7, despite the new phone boasting similar battery life.
Figures published by TENAA, the Chinese wireless regulator, showed that the batteries in the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus have capacities of 1,821 and 2,675 milliampere hours (mAh) respectively, compared to the 1,900 and 2,900 mAh of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus.
Apple, which tends to focus on battery performance rather than technical specifications, says its new iPhones last “about the same” as their predecessors. This is probably a result of a more efficient processor in the new devices.
Apple often changes the size of batteries in its iPhones, even on models with similar dimensions. When it released the iPhone 6s two years ago, the battery was slightly smaller than its predecessor to make room for the introduction of 3D Touch. The absence of the headphone jack in last year’s iPhone 7 meant Apple was able to fit in a bigger battery.
It is unclear why Apple has reduced the size of the battery in the iPhone 8, but space is always at a premium inside smartphones. Since the battery is one of the biggest components, new additions to the phone often mean shaving down its size.
The iPhone 8’s smaller battery may be down to its wireless charging technology, which requires an electromagnetic coil connected to the battery to be fitted inside the phone. Unlike the iPhone 7, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus also have fast charging, which may affect the battery’s energy density.
Although bigger batteries tend to mean longer life, milliampere hours are not a wholly reliable indication of how long a battery actually lasts.
Key features | iPhone 8 and 8 Plus
Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8, for example, has a 3,300 mAh battery, 23pc bigger than the iPhone 8 Plus, but the two phones have almost identical reported talk times at 22 hours and 21 hours respectively.
Power management software, the type of screen, and the efficiency of the processors inside the phone all make a difference to battery life.
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