The world of iPhone patents often throws up some bizarre ideas.
But there’s nothing odd about Cupertino’s latest filing, which shows off futuristic plans for fixing one of the smartphone era’s most enduring issues: Battery drain.
The new plans show how a future iPhone could use gyroscope, charging patterns and APIs tied to the Calendar app to keep batteries kicking for longer.
Getting on a flight? Your phone will automatically go into Airplane Mode and dial down key settings so the battery can last longer in the air.
Don’t use your phone much while at work? It’ll only draw power when it needs it most.
This kind of tech is long overdue. The fact is that while smartphone technology has evolved at a lightning fast rate since 2007, battery tech just hasn’t kept up.
Our personal Nexus 4 needs juice at least twice a day, and that’s just after some casual web browsing and listening to a few playlists on Spotify.
Use it to stream video and you need a power point every three or four hours.
Recent stories about iOS 7.1’s excessive battery drain make the leaking of this patent even more timely.
Users have been complaining endlessly about the iPhone having poor battery life since the overhauled OS was first revealed last year, and this new update does nothing to fix it.
The problem is that phone makers want to deliver slimmer and slimmer devices.
Adding a bigger battery pack means more weight, means thicker devices, means less svelte looks.
But surely at a time when we hang on these devices every second of the day, that’s a compromise consumers should be willing to make.
It’s that or use a special case with a power pack. And who really wants to use one of those?
Simply going into power saving mode when a smartphone hits critical power is no longer a smart option.
Neither is turning brightness down so low that it’s impossible to see the screen when you leave the house.
There has to be a savvier way of doing things. Apple’s patent shows that there is, but that it’s still some way off.
If it could include this tech in the iPhone 6, then surely it would be looking at even bigger sales.
Users are sick of having to find power points when they’re out.
It’s high time Apple led the way and showed that battery tech can get better, quicker. Lord knows we smartphone fans need it.