What’s normal usage with a tech product?
My recent return to the iPhone has quickly reminded me that while there is a ton of power available, the more you use the more you pay. With a mobile device that payment comes in the form of battery life and I am not impressed with the iPhone 3GS so far.
My benchmark for smartphones is one day. One day. Getting up at 6 I want to get back home by 8 on a single charge. That has proven impossible on the iPhone.
This am I unplugged the iPhone and checked mail and the weather before showering. Before I left the house, I did a sync with iTunes (podcasts and some new tunes) and then checked the app store for updates. During the course of my commute, I had the iPod playing while running through safari, email and tweetdeck. I used snapped a picture which I uploaded while walking through Grand Central and then checked in on foursquare a few times as well as I passed by a few spots.
When I got to the office (~8:45) I had 47% of my battery left. That means the iPhone would be dead by lunchtime easily at my current rate. WTF? I checked and I have 8 apps ready to use push notices currently so perhaps that’s having an effect but before those apps were even available I saw. Very rapid drain during the course of my morning trip. A quick check now (on the train home) and I can see I have burned about 25% of the battery since leaving the office a bit over an hour ago. Again WTF?
In discussing the battery and laptop performance issues with various people it seems everyone considers my usage more aggressive shall we say than average. No argument here though I don’t see my usage as that unusual anymore actually given the social environment along with the amount of information we are consuming in the more realtime web.
I believe the iPhone only has a 1200Mah battery which is lower than other smartphones in the general competitve set. My Nokia E71 runs with a 1500 battery and has considerably longer life than the E75 which uses a smaller capacity 1350Mah battery. Cleary 1500 shoul be the standard. All of these devices have 3G, wifi, GPS and run lots of applications – concurrently on the Nokia kit.
Is the iPhone actually a mid-tier product operating through the higher end space with a slick UX? Perhaps … The seductive nature of the experience and the flexibility of the applications make it seems like considerably more which has definitley set my expectations.