There’s a growing trend when it comes to our smartphones and battery life. As our devices get more sophisticated, their uptimes get conversely smaller. There are two immediate ways to get around this hunger for power. You either start bringing along power banks or power cases, or you hope that your OEM starts putting in larger batteries, in which case the smartphone itself gets larger. Apple, however, isn’t giving in to the trend and is keeping its smaller, non-removable batteries. Why? Because you wouldn’t want to a larger battery. Or so says Apple’s Jonathan Ive.
Ive is the company’s foremost designer, so when he speaks, people listen. Well, at least those with an inclination towards design. In an interview with Financial Times about the upcoming Apple Watch, he offers some insights on one of the oft cited weakness of iPhones: its battery. In light of the supposed need to charge the Apple Watch daily, the question about the iPhone’s own charging needs inevitably came up. And Ive’s answer, while not exactly flawed, is at the very least amusing when it comes to logic.
The main reason why Apple would not put a larger battery inside its smartphone is because it would make the device more cumbersome and less compelling. The line of reasoning goes like this: people buy an iPhone because of its premium look and feel, part of which is thanks to its slim profile and lightweight construction, which, in turn, is thanks to not having a larger and heavier battery. If Apple were to put a larger battery, it would make the iPhone the opposite of that: larger, bulkier, heavier. In short, it would take away one of the sources of appeal for the device. And that, in turn, would hurt Apple’s sales.
Or to make it short, Apple won’t put larger batteries despite user complaints about battery life because then they wouldn’t buy an iPhone anymore. It’s a kind of logic that isn’t exactly flawed from a technical point of view, but it is a theory that will definitely need some verification. It is definitely true that people flock to the iPhone partly because of its classy appearance and feel, but it still needs to be proven how much battery weight factors into the equation or how much users are willing to compromise for a better battery life. After all, the iPhone 6 Plus sales figures proved that a good number are willing to sacrifice single hand manageability for the sake of a bigger screen. To some, a bigger battery might be even worth more than screen real estate.
But since we’re unlikely to have bigger or replaceable iPhone batteries, if you are interested in squeezing out every bit of juice from the back, be sure to take a peek at our guide to getting a two-day battery life for the iPhone 6.