The Always Charging to 100% Syndrome

Published 9 September 2016

This is another of my regular pre-weekend post that is partially technology related for relaxed reading.

Ever since I carry mobile phones and recently with iPad, I have this nagging need to charge them to 100% before going out the door. After thinking about it for a while, I realised it is triggered by a couple of things:

  1. I have experienced zero battery power on my phone after just 4-6 hours of usage.
  2. I have used the phones more intensively than before which drains battery at a faster rate while previously I do not always use my phone that intensively.
  3. Work goes on past work hours
  4. Fear of missing “important” messages

And when I thought about it, I have refrained from going to swim because I am afraid that I miss a message or two. 9 years back, I used to go for long run with a group of runners and I always leave my phone in the car for that peace of mind. Now peace of mind is kept intact when I have my phone in my arm-band when I do long exercise sessions. I wonder aloud when did this change came about.

Thinking back, it began for about 2 to 3 years ago when calls and messages about work that needs to be addressed even after work hours, plus the fact that the phone battery gets drained in the daytime when it was used more intensively to check and response to messages. It was also the time that portable battery-bank became very popular and I’ve got three of those. I looked at my phone accessories and I have three phone cases that also act as spare batteries albeit one for each model of phone I had ever owned. I also installed battery doctor app, switch screen brightness down, and look for seats with power socket when I am in Starbucks. I think all this small stuff adds to the stress of daily life.

Actually, there were never anytime that I missed critical messages when I happened to have powered-drained-phone situations. I think I kind of put myself into what-if-I-miss-important-message stress that makes me always want to keep phone charged to and at 100%.

The phone processor and phone manufacturers have responded with quick-charge technology, phone with larger battery capacity, and some of the “plus” models or phabets have bigger than 3,500mAH or 4,000 mAH capacity. However, I still need to find a battery outlet or carry a portable battery-bank to juice up my phone.

Now that my phone contract is up for renewal with my carrier, I am searching for a new phone and a critical feature is battery capacity and quick-charge 3.0 support.

I am now considering these few phones, Samsung Note 7 (4,000 mAH battery), Oppo R9 Plus (4,120 mAH battery), Huawei P9 Plus (3,400 mAH). I had even considered phones not carried by my carrier like the Huawei Honor Note 8 (a big 4,500 mAH battery) or the Xiaomi Max (humongous 4,850 mAH) but the lure of the carrier subsidized phone (tied with the renewal of post-paid phone plan) for getting a Oppo R9 Plus at a one-time price of SGD 99 (without carrier subsidy will be SGD 610) is too good to pass up.

Optimistically, the new phone with quick-charge technology will mean it last me until sleep time. I will still carry a lower capacity (meaning lighter) portable battery-bank just in case anyway.

While the new technology and new phone will help, I also hoped that I can relaxed a little and just take the phone and go without always plugging it to the power socket to charge. There is a lot more stuff to handle then to always wait to be 100%.

Recently, I do noticed lots more people are in the park walking about, partly to exercise but mostly to play the Pokemon Go game on their phones. I don’t do games but I do enjoy reading a book via Amazon Reader app while exercising on stationary bike so that is a relaxing situation.

I will make it a habit to swim or run without my phone in the weekends, to re-capture and enjoy that sense of peace, hopefully without stressing out by thinking “what-if an important message comes in” kind of thoughts.

Have a great weekend!


The Always Charging to 100% Syndrome

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