HTC, Your Conclusion That Customers Prefer Thinner Phones Vs. Better Battery Life Is An Outright Failure.

Sick and tired of phone manufacturers fighting over the ridiculous title to be the “world’s thinnest smartphone” while at the same time also possessing battery life that would make a simple capacitor blush? So are we. So damn sick of it. Every single feature you use on that fancy smartphone of yours sucks battery life. And each one of those features is completely useless once the battery dies. If this sounds like the daily rant going on inside of your head, don’t plan on getting an HTC device in the near-term. Today at a public event, Bjorn Kilburn, HTC’s vice president of product strategy revealed that after thorough research the company discovered customers favor thinness over battery life more often, and because of the results, removed larger batteries (and thicker phones) from their immediate roadmap.

*Rage face*

What a stupid move. If you use the various new items of technology like LTE, high resolution gigantor displays, multi-core processors + GPUs, high-megapixel photo and video capabilities and keep most if not all of the various wireless radios enabled 24/7, under heavy use you’ll get anywhere from 3-7 hours — max. While a fair amount of human beings are next to some form of electric power source with which to charge their device with, it really doesn’t need to be stressed any further how terrible battery technology has (failed) to keep pace with the technology it powers.

All that said, the really maddening thing about this thinness vs. battery life argument is that manufacturers and fighting over thicknesses of less than ~2mm. 2mm!. Is it really worth it to sacrifice a decent amount of ingenuity and size to give customers 1-4 more hours of runtime? No.

I’ll be the first to admit that I really am not impressed with Motorola’s mobile hardware as of late, and even less so with the garbage they call a UI. But what they did with the RAZR MAXX (stuffing a massive 3,300 mAh battery inside while still retaining a svelte 8.89mm is a recipe for success. Mind you, the fatter RAZR MAXX, which God forbid sacrificed thickness for battery life, is a mere ~1.78mm thicker than it’s non-MAXX sibling. Stacked on top of one another it’s very easy to see the sacrifice in size is a mute point.

(See image below: RAZR MAXX on top, original RAZR on bottom).

Image property of CNET: Link

In short: HTC’s conclusion is bullshit and they’re going to pay dearly for it if Motorola starts using their head and cramming 2500+ mAh batteries into all of their phones.

As I mentioned above, I really don’t like Motorola’s last ~2 years of effort as far as smartphones go in terms of hardware and software. But if I’m left with an increasingly limited field from which to big long-running phones from, Motorola will win every time. And guess which Android phone I’ll recommend more often? That’s right. Motorola’s RAZR MAXX (or any other phone that shows the engineers used common sense..aka..big batteries).

It’s Not Just About Battery Life

If we take battery life out of the equation and simply focus on the thickness, I’ve always maintained that these super thin, rectangular, boxy phones are uncomfortable to hold and use for extended periods. As much as I love my iPhone 4S, it’s far from easy/comfortable to hold when having hour-long Twitter sessions. It’s honestly probably one of the least comfortable phones to use. Cases help. But the best solution is to simple make the phone a tiny bit thicker, a bit more rounded and ultimately a through and through better device because there is more room for battery power.

The RAZR MAXX is a pretty comfortable device to hold thanks to the added girth. My favorite: The Photon. It’s an awesome device for the true power users who man-handle their phone on a daily basis for many hours throughout the day.

HTC’s Solution Is Partially Flawed

HTC’s response to criticisms regarding their choice to focus on thinness is that advancements in battery technology and more efficient hardware/software are what’s ultimately needed. And they’re right. But better battery technology and more efficient hardware/software must be combined with physically bigger batteries for now. Battery efficient and technology has not had any major “Woah!” moments that have actually hit the public in a solid 8 years. And it’ll likely be another ~5 before anything worthwhile hits the masses.

Until battery technology catches up, we need bigger batteries to power these mobile computers in our hands — that is unless you just want to sit and admire your phone’s ~1mm thinner casing while it sits dead as a doornail.

Article inspired by “HTC: Customers prefer thin phones to battery life” as seen on The Verge

Main image source:

  • Vahishta Mistry

    Your / you’re. Seriously. 

  • Pro Blog

    let them tell you it’s Motorola, and look at the droid reserves max.