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Apple’s iPhone 14 could solve the 5G battery drain problem

Apple is reportedly preparing to boost the battery life of the iPhone 14 by switching 5G components, according to a report from the Taiwan-based Economic Daily News. The phone maker will reportedly be switching from Samsung to TSMC for its 5G RF chips in the next iPhone, with the latter’s 5G chips being built to consume less power. Qualcomm will likely still be responsible for the Snapdragon X65 5G modem, though Apple might go with its own modem as soon as next year.

With the iPhone 12, Apple’s slate of iPhones reported weaker battery life than their predecessors due to the 5G battery tax (and smaller batteries). Apple has done a lot of work in fixing that since then, and now its phones are class-leading in that category. TSMC’s chips are said to run on a 6nm process. This means that it would take up less physical space and consume less power while in use. Were Apple simply to keep the iPhone batteries the same size, it would see gains without making any further changes, especially as 5G becomes more widespread.

A meaningful upgrade

iPhone 13 Pro Max back.
The iPhone 13 series of smartphones has class-leading battery life. Ajay Kumar/Digital Trends

Battery life is one of the most meaningful features a portable computer can have, and it’s the one feature that’s been neglected on many of the best smartphones, compared to displays or cameras. It’s been possible to have multiple days of battery life in chunky phones with hefty batteries for a while now, but Apple’s managed to wring out impressive stamina from comparatively smaller batteries.

Where phones like Pixel 6 Pro and S22 Ultra manage adequate staying power with 5,ooomAh batteries, the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max excel despite smaller 3,000-4,000mAh rated capacities. If Apple capitalizes on this and builds smartphones that last even longer, as this report indicates, then the company may well secure a reputation for stamina.

As for when we can expect the iPhone 14, it’s likely the same time as last year. The Economic Times says that says Apple has already started trial mass production for the next iPhone, as its design has been finalized. With that in mind, and barring major disruptions to the supply chain over the next few months as happened in 2020, it’s safe to pencil in the new iPhone for a fall launch.

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