Apple will continue to tell everyone who cares to listen how amazing the iPhone 7 is, but as the weeks tick by from its launch, the smartphone is looking less and less amazing. The latest disappointment? Battery life.
The removal of the headphone jack has not been well received and there’s even a case trying to fix it . Now a battery test comparing the iPhone 7 to its three major rivals has seen Apple’s smartphone come in last, and by some margin on talk time.
The testing was carried out by the independent UK consumer body Which? Two tests were carried out focusing on 3G call time and 3G Internet use. The iPhone 7 running iOS 10 was pitted against the HTC 10, LG G5, and Samsung Galaxy S7 all running Android 6.0 Marshmallow.
Here’s the results:
Now, Apple and I’m sure many iPhone users will argue that 10 hours of Internet browsing or 12 hours of talk time are more than enough. But I’d argue that’s not the point. These are results from testing, which while useful are not fully representative of real-world use and that always ends up being worse. You have to view this as best case, and batteries do deteriorate over time.
The reason why Apple comes in last is easily explained: it has a tiny battery compared to the competition. Here’s the battery size of each smartphone:
Galaxy S7: 3,000mAh
HTC 10: 3,000mAh
LG G5: 2,800mAh
iPhone 7: 1,960mAh
The size of the battery demonstrates the priorities within Apple. They want the thinnest and lightest fully-featured phone they can create, and if that means shipping a smaller battery then that’s what they will do. Apple knows what its competitors are doing and could very easily increase the size of the battery to top the charts, but thin and light is more important to them so they make decisions with that being the priority. If there’s any other valid reasons for shipping a significantly smaller, non-removable battery I’d like to hear them.
Would anyone care if the iPhone 7 was a few millimeters thicker? Outside of Apple I highly doubt it. Would iPhone users appreciate an extra 3-5 hours of battery life between charges? I can’t see anyone answering no to that question, can you?