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How to Beat the Agony of a Dying Phone Battery

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Phones and tablets are our main computers these days. We rely on them. Manufacturers limit the device’s performance once battery capacity has dropped below a certain threshold. And most of the time, people don’t realize that.

Batteries are usually overlooked when we buy a new phone or tablet. They’re seen as the “fuel tank” that doesn’t weigh as much as the screen or shiny aluminum+glass casing, or the processor.

How a dying battery leads to user frustration

Actually, batteries are the main source of frustration when it comes to performance and the overall usability of the phone.

For example, one might think he’ll replace the defective battery after it “runs out”. Which is most of the time false. You don’t even notice the source of your discomfort. I’ve been there. You just know there’s something bugging you. You may even think it’s the phone battery, but you choose to ignore that and keep charging to 100% every night. The situation gets even worse after a while when you’ll discharge it to 0% every day, because you need that phone. And here’s your battery’s life.

After a year, your once new phone is as annoying as the old one before it. And what do you do with it? Nothing. You keep using it, because you have to get on with your life, don’t have time for changing you beloved brick that heats up more and more each day.

And here comes the tricky part: you see other, newer phone offers on the market and they’re pretty tempting. You put your hands on that brand new Samsung and see that your old one still looks good but now works like a hog. You’ve already reset it, uninstalled software and generally did everything right. Like charging it to 100% each and every time you had the chance, meticulously.

After a year and a half, your phone is still good… until 2PM. At that time, battery power reaches 20% and by 2:30pm it will be out.

Words like “do you happen to have a charger?” come out of your mouth more often than usual.

Two year mark has passed. Your phone now only gets you till noon.

The new phone

You’re annoyed as **** and get new phone. Your old one, instead of giving it to your kid or reselling it, gets thrown somewhere around the house. After a while, it gets to the garbage bin, since you don’t have time to repair it or the money is not worth it. You treat it just like a consumable, even though it used to be a marvel of engineering just two years ago.

This is the worst case scenario that can happen to a piece of technology we all depend on nowadays.

There is a solution to this

Fortunately, something can be done which can prevent the premature death of your phone battery: not charging it completely.

Because of lithium ion battery enhancements, since around 2017 phones started having higher capacity batteries. This leads to your gadget being able to get you out from the day with only one charge. When it’s new, at least. In the evening, you may have some 30% left in your battery, on average.

This opens the door for partial recharging strategies that were unthinkable of only a few years ago.

Which is to say, if you recharge your battery only up to 85% or 90% it will accept many more cycles (up to 5 times more) than if you had charged it to 100%.

Studies have revealed that the worst enemy of lithium ion batteries is heat.

Keeping your phone full all night, every night, heats up the battery and stresses the internal lithium polymer compound. Which, in turn, makes the battery lose capacity. It will still show you it’s charging to 100% (which it is), but that’s not the same 100% it was a few months ago, when it was new.

Meet Chargie

Developed by Lighty Electronics, Chargie is a phone charge limiter. It connects between your phone and regular USB charger and will keep your battery limited to a certain percentage of your choice, even while you sleep. This de-stresses the internal lithium lattice and dramatically increases its lifespan, so it will be capable of holding charge for a whole day even after 4 years.

It is also useful when, for example, you use your phone as a navigation device and it sits in your car’s dash. That’s one of the most stressful moments a battery can endure: getting charged to 100% while in direct sunlight. In these conditions, temperatures may even reach 140°F or 60°C. Furthermore, you may also have your phone inserted in a protective case, like we all do. So not only it is receiving heat, but it’s also not allowed to dissipate it properly.

In these circumstances, for example, you can set Chargie to limit charge at 50% and battery temperature drops by an astonishing 30%.

It has an intuitive app that manages the entire charge limiting process. It looks like this:

Chargie is much cheaper than a battery

While it costs just a fraction of your phone or even a battery replacement, Chargie is future proof: you will be using it for your next phone and so on for many years to come.

What’s more important, though, is that it will save you from getting frustrated with your actual phone, and you’ll be able to enjoy its functionality up until you decide it’s time for a new one, because of real technological advancements, not because of a dying battery. And at that time you may give it to someone in need, or your child, or even sell it to recover a portion of the costs. Just like Nokia 3310s were back in the day, present day smartphones could be a marvel of longevity and engineering even in 2030.

So, in the end, while disclosing that I myself started the Chargie project, I strongly encourage you to get one and at the same time support this project enter other territories, like laptops. Those are used for even longer than phones, and while their batteries are bigger, the impact is about the same, with a few small exceptions.

Chargie is the only hardware phone charge limiter in the world. Get it today: https://chargie.org/shop-2/

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks for your appreciation. However, this is a startup product, and can’t compare price-wise with Chinese high volume manufacturers, that can sell such hardware for $2 if they want to. Software development is also a factor, it all costs money. Plus there are the taxes, the price here is inclusive of VAT (19%). And you can use the same stick for more than one device, for the rest of your life, it isn’t limited to just one phone type. In most of Europe, a battery change costs way more than 35 euros.

  2. Ideally this should (will) be an app, then a built-in feature. In the mean time, especially if your phone has a soldiered non-replaceable battery, this hardware solution could do the trick nicely.

    It’s quite expensive however: My (then) top of the line Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is over 4 years old, still working fine, and the original manufacturer’s replacement battery is less expensive than this device. Competitors batteries are even 2-3 times less expensive. I guess it may make sense for Apple phones and tablets, which are more expensive. What’s €30 if you buy $1,500 phones from a trillion dollars company?

    An easy trick if you want to control the charging of your phone: Use an outlet with a built-in switch and leave your charger plugged in at all times instead of plugging and unplugging it, so you can turn it off at will during the day or at night, and turn it on in the morning again if necessary. Have a second outlet with a switch at work. Switching the power outlet on and off is much more convenient than plugging and unplugging the charger, so it’s easy to switch it off instead of letting the phone charge for too long.

    In the car, if your built-in charger is too powerful, get a cheap lighter adapter with low ampere, it probably will never get your phone to 100% if you are using power-hungry Google Maps. But for security of mind, nothing seems to beat Chargy.

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