Technology in general and mobile tech in particular is on a rapid march forward, but there's a bottleneck that's holding it back: batteries. For years lithium-ion batteries have been the best option for storing energy pound-for-pound, but they've hit a wall - now we can only get bigger batteries or make our gadgets more efficient. A team of researchers at Stanford University have created what they call the "holy grail" of battery technology, a battery with a stable lithium anode.
Battery life on Android has been a bit of a sore spot for many users, mostly because it's simply not good enough. Most devices can make it a day on moderate use, and a few can even do so comfortably, very few phones can hit two days without some time on the charger. The Android "L" release is making several improvements to power efficiency via Project Volta, but there are also ways to improve 3rd-party apps, and that's where the new Job Scheduler comes in.
At Google I/O last week, Google announced Project Volta, its effort to change and drastically improve how Android manages battery life. Since then the folks over at Ars Technica have downloaded the publicly available L developer preview build and put it through its paces. Is there a noticeable difference? Yes, apparently. They were able to get an an extra two hours of battery life out of their Nexus 5, an improvement of thirty-six percent.
Shortly after the new Android Runtime made its grand entrance, I ran a pretty exhaustive (and exhausting) series of performance benchmarks that showed ART wasn't really ready to blow us away. At the time, I opted to avoid the topic of battery life because it is so difficult to test accurately and with unbiased, meaningful results. As it turns out, that was dumb. Yup, so many of you have asked, I finally had no choice but to dive in and run a battery of tests on...well, the battery.
It's fair to say that Android went through some chaotic years in the beginning. The pace of development was frantic as the operating system grew at an unprecedented rate. An as-yet undetermined future led to decisions that were made to conform to existing hardware and architectures, the available development tools, and the basic need to ship working code on tight deadlines. Now that the OS has matured, the Android team has been giving more attention to some of the components that haven't aged quite as well.
Wireless charging is perhaps one of the best examples of true convenience. The simple act of setting your phone down meant its battery would begin refilling. No need to hunt for the end of a cable, no more time spent clumsily aligning plugs, and no more hassle with loose cords. When the Nexus 4 was announced, its stylish charging orb was supposed to spearhead a movement of wireless bliss. While the orb certainly had its advantages, it was a bit late to launch and carried a premium price.
For a long time, the HTC One S was one of the most compelling phones on T-Mobile. That really tells you something about the lineup America's smallest national carrier was working with last year. There are plenty of these devices walking around, so today's update will be good news for many. That battery life problem introduced in Jelly Bean should be taken care of finally.
The update will come via an OTA, which begins rolling out today.
Most smartphone manufacturers have chosen to ignore Intel's mobile offerings in favor of ARM chips, but Intel is hoping to change their minds with its latest microarchitecture. Today Intel unveiled Silvermont, which reportedly will result in new mobile chips with three times the performance of current-gen Intel Atom processors. Alternatively, Silvermont will enable Intel's next-gen Merrifield smartphone chips to achieve the same performance levels as Clover Trail+ with one-fifth of the power consumption.
If there's one common issue with smartphones across the board, it's battery life. Rightfully so, we all want more of it without having to sacrifice usage. Thankfully, Qualcomm is looking to help owners of Snapdragon-powered smartphones get just a bit more out of their device's battery with the new Snapdragon BatteryGuru beta.
In a nutshell, it monitors your usage, "learning" what you do with your device.
The phone with the name everyone loves to hate – Sprint's Samsung Galaxy SII Epic 4G Touch – began receiving a minor (and I mean minor) software update over the air today.
The OTA, which carries software build D710.10S.FH13 (for reference compare to the E4GT's Ice Cream Sandwich build D710.10.S.FF18), brings just one thing to the table: battery life enhancement.
Just how enhanced users should expect their battery life to be is unclear as yet, but being able to squeeze just a bit more life out of your handset is never a bad thing.