How to choose a battery for a smartphone: what to consider
The main criteria for choosing a battery for a smartphone are:
- Type (external, internal removable, internal non-removable);
- Capacity (for internal);
- Characteristics of external batteries (capacity, case material, output current, number and types of connectors, support for fast charging technologies).
The type of battery itself can be ignored, since in the vast majority of cases, lithium-polymer batteries are used in smartphones.
Types of batteries
The concept of “battery” in relation to smartphones is quite extensible. This term can refer to both a built-in battery and an external battery designed to recharge the device away from a power outlet. On English-speaking online stores, devices of the first type are called battery, and the second – power bank.
External battery (portable, power bank, power bank)
An external battery is a simple device designed to recharge a smartphone or some device away from a “socket”. Structurally, it is a battery connected to a power controller. Being charged, it is able to store the accumulated energy for some (relatively long) time, and then share it with the connected smartphone.
External batteries are not capable of replacing a damaged smartphone battery or just a charger. They are designed specifically to store a certain amount of energy “in reserve” in case of a sudden discharge of your favorite device.
Internal removable battery
Internal removable batteries are installed directly into the smartphone, most often under the back panel, and are designed to power the mobile device. The removable design means that such a battery can be removed if necessary – to replace it with another one or turn off the device completely.
Internal non-removable battery
Internal removable batteries are structurally similar to removable batteries, with the exception of a few “buts”. Firstly, they are located behind a non-separable body, as a result of which it is almost impossible to extract them without special knowledge and equipment. Secondly, the connection of such batteries to the motherboard has a more compact size. Finally, the absence of high-resistance connectors allows the use of fast charging technologies.
Which battery to choose?
When choosing a battery, it is worth considering several parameters depending on the intended use:
- Check if your smartphone has a removable or non-removable battery. The removable one can be replaced by yourself, and to remove the non-removable one and install a new one, you will need to carry the device to a service center;
- What do you need a battery for? If the smartphone’s battery starts to drain quickly and more than a year has passed since the purchase of the device, it gets very hot or almost instantly discharges in the cold, then you need to replace the internal battery. If you just want to extend the autonomy, you need an external one;
- In order to extend the autonomy of a smartphone with a removable internal battery, you can purchase several internal batteries and change them as they run out. But it’s not as practical as using a power bank.
It is worth remembering that the rapid discharge of the battery under normal conditions, as well as its heating, can signal not only damage to the battery. Often such “symptoms” are caused by problems with the firmware. Therefore, before buying an internal battery, you should contact the service center.
Smartphone Battery Options
The selection options for internal and external batteries are different.
When choosing an internal battery, you should pay attention to the following characteristics:
The model is especially important for internal non-removable batteries. It directly determines the possibility of installing a battery in an existing smartphone – both in terms of design features and electrical parameters. You can find out a specific model both from the sticker on the existing battery, and from the specifications of the device.
For internal removable batteries, the model is important, but not dominant.
Compatibility defines, as the name implies, the compatibility of a battery with an existing smartphone. It can be both constructive and electrical. Compatibility of the first type implies the possibility of installing a battery in a smartphone – it must have the same dimensions and the same pin arrangement as the original one. Electrotechnical means that the same current and voltage will be used as should be used in the device.
Compatibility is usually indicated on the packaging and in the description of the battery.
The capacity determines the battery life of the smartphone from the battery in use. The higher it is, the longer the device will “live” without recharging. However, in most cases, the capacity of the new battery corresponds to the same parameter of the old one.
When choosing a portable battery, you should pay attention to the following characteristics:
- Charging current;
- body material;
- Number and types of connectors;
- Support for fast charging technologies.
Capacity determines the battery life. More precisely, it depends on it how many times the “power bank” is able to charge the smartphone connected to it. Most modern mobile devices are equipped with a 2000-3000 mAh battery, so you should take an external charger with at least 5000 mAh, since its self-discharge, current transfer drops and other factors that reduce the actual capacity are observed.
Charging current determines the charging speed of the connected smartphone. For older devices, the optimal value for this parameter is 500 mA. For new smartphones, it is pointless to buy external batteries rated less than 1A. They will drain faster than they can charge.
Housing material determines the practicality of a power bank. Plastic is cheap, but easily scratches and cracks when dropped. Metal is a little more expensive, but more practical.
Number of connectors determines the number of devices that can be charged from one “power bank” at the same time. If the external battery is planned to be used only with a smartphone, then one connector will suffice. If with a laptop, tablet, headphones, smartwatch or similar device, you will need at least two connectors.
Connector type determines compatibility with cables. The most common standard is USB Type-A – or “regular” USB. Modern USB Type-C is still quite rare. Even smartphones equipped with it are usually equipped with a USB Type-A cable on one side and Type-C on the other.
Support for fast charging technology will allow you to restore the energy reserve in the battery of the connected smartphone (which also supports it) much faster than usual. However, it leads to intensive wear of the power bank batteries.
How to choose an external battery for a smartphone
When choosing an external battery, it is worth considering several questions:
- Capacity. The minimum required is 5000 mAh. Taking into account external factors, it will allow you to charge your smartphone from 0 to 100% once. Better, of course, 10000 mAh or even higher;
- Number of connectors. On external batteries rated less than 10,000 mAh, it is pointless to install more than one port;
- Charging current. For new smartphones, it must be at least 1 A;
- Material. You should choose based on your own preferences.
- Support for fast charging is not particularly needed.
Top Smartphone Battery Manufacturers
The best manufacturers of internal batteries are:
- Manufacturers of smartphones themselves – Samsung, Sony, etc.
The best manufacturers of power banks:
- Inter Step;
- Also interesting are the products of Rombica.
In the following articles, our experts tell you how to choose a push-button phone and the secrets of choosing a phone for the Internet.