Smartphone users have rejoiced in the revolution brought by the display quality and screen size. 1080p display resolution is now a standard for premium phones, and the fabled '2K' resolution is coming in upcoming flagships. Battery life is still a problem in today's smartphones though, every Android-related website performs their own battery of tests (pun intended) to test a bevy of battery-related tests.
However, all these numbers conveniently overlook the fact that every smartphone user is essentially unique. Every smartphone gets used in a unique way by the person owning and using it. This brings us back to the question we wish to answer in this article – how much battery life am I actually getting out of my smartphone? Google's Play store is fabled to house more apps than we care to use, however, amongst all the rubble one occasionally finds a gem which makes us look at our devices in a whole new way. One such gem of an app is developed by Hwang Tae-rok named simply as "Battery Log". The steps stated below will help you identify exactly how many days or hours your smartphone actually lasts for your unique usage.
Head over to Google Play and download Battery Log and install it on your Android phone or tablet. The app runs in the background and uses minimal resources without any perceptible reduction in device performance. We tested the app on an older HTC Sensation XL (1.5 GHz, single core, 768 MB RAM, running Android 4.4 Kit Kat) and did not find it to affect system performance anyhow. Battery Log will run in the background and keep logging battery performance as you continue to use your phone normally. We would suggest to give it some time to log your battery's performance – a week would be perfect – as well as to run the device from a full-charge to a full-discharge cycle during that time. Once the testing period is over, head over to the app on your device, tap on "Log info (List)" and look for times when your device was at peak charge – 100% if it was a full charge – and the subsequent time it reached full discharge or 0%. Calculating the difference between these times would give you the actual hours your battery lasted.
As an example, if your battery ran from a full charge to a full discharge three times in the week's period – calculate the duration it lasted in those three cycles and take a simple average. Since we were testing the app on an older device, notorious for its sub-par battery performance, a single charge-discharge cycle lasted just 5 hours with moderate use on 3G. The Battery Log app will ultimately help you in not only identifying how soon you should be near a charger to juice up your device, but will also let you know if your battery performance has been degrading over time.
If your battery results suggest that the battery performance has degraded much below what was advertised, you can hit up the following "secret code" to check out the health of your battery. On your keypad dial in the USSD command *#*#4636#*#* and tap on battery info. If the battery status is good, you're good to go. If the battery needs changing you can definitely check it out from here as well. We finally got our fears confirmed – our smartphone does indeed suck at battery life and it is high time we change. What about you? How long does your battery life last? Get the Battery Log app from the link below, test out your battery life and shout it out to us in the comments.