Smartphone technology has advanced at a head-spinning rate over the past few years, and our mobile devices can do more than even the most powerful computers could just 15 years ago. Unfortunately, the joy and convenience that we get from these devices are brief and fleeting, because we find ourselves running for our chargers and power outlets every few hours. Battery technology has struggled to keep up with the demands of 4G technology, larger displays and powerful processors, but that could soon change.
Researchers at the University of Michigan have been working on a new battery that helps maximize smartphone battery life up to 50% when connected to a Wi-Fi network. While it sounds very limited in its application, it could open up the doors to improving battery life in other areas, like cellular network connectivity.
A report from CIO says:
When Wi-Fi-enabled modern smartphones are connected to Wi-Fi and other wireless networks, they’re constantly communicating with those networks to determine if new data, such as e-mail messages, need to be “pulled down” and delivered to users’ devices, according to the researchers–which is why it’s a good idea to turn off your Wi-Fi radio when it’s not in use. So Shin and his student set out to find a way to decrease the amount of power required for this communication, or “idle listening,” between Wi-Fi devices and Wi-Fi networks, and they came up with [“”Energy-Minimizing Idle Listening” (E-MiLi)].
The technology will be demonstrated later this month, and while it is still in its infancy, its implications for use with 3G and 4G networks are exciting. Just imagine being able to leave home in the morning without your charger or a spare battery, and make it back for dinner with plenty of juice to spare. One can dream.