While smartphones continue to get thinner and thinner each year, their battery life continues to remain the same, and if the rising popularity of phone cases that feature an extra battery is any indication, that’s something most users don’t appreciate. However, if a recent report from Japan’s Nikkei newspaper is accurate, Sony might be the one to save the day, as the company is said to be working on a smartphone battery that can last 40% longer on a single charge.
According to Nikkei, Sony may be looking to make its name in the mobile industry once again not with a new smartphone, but with new batteries that could wind up in everyone else’s phones. As opposed to continuing to develop the lithium batteries already in wide use, Sony is working on increasing the energy capacity through a battery based on a sulfur compound.
Sulfur-based batteries have been considered before, however the main issue is that they suffer from decreased capacity over each charing cycle due the electrode dissolving into the electrolyte. Nikkei believes Sony has managed to address this issue, and is currently conducting safety tests, as well as working on means of mass-production.
The Japanese newspaper suggests that Sony’s new batteries wouldn’t hit the consumer market until the year 2020 at the earliest, so we won’t be seeing drastically improved batteries in our smartphones for some time. However, if the claim of a 40% longer life is accurate, an iPhone 6s powered by one of these sulfer-based batteries could boast of about 14 hours of web browsing time. At least that’s one feature we could look forward to on the iPhone 9.