iPhone 14 Pro Max with a 5000 mAh battery would be the end to the Android vs Apple battery debate

As you might know, the iPhone 13 Pro Max is the current battery life champ when it comes to flagship smartphones. It comfortably outlasts everything Samsung, Google, OnePlus, Motorola, and Xiaomi have to offer, and it manages to do so with relatively modest hardware (but better optimization).

So, the fact that Apple doesn’t even seem to be trying « too hard » with more efficient chips (on paper) and bigger batteries, but iPhone 13 Pro Max is still in a battery league of its own, made me ask myself a question…

What if the iPhone 14 Pro Max (coming out in September) had the same size battery as the Galaxy S22 Ultra and Pixel 6 Pro? Would it consistently last two full days on a single charge? Maybe even three days, depending on your usage? To answer this question, I’d have to do one of my « favorite » things in the world – maths, but also take a look at some of the iPhone 14 leaks and rumors we’ve seen so far, because numbers don’t tell the whole story here.

So, let’s hit the numbers, digits, signs, leaks, and everything in between, and see what a 5000 mAh cell would do to an iPhone 14 Pro Max’s battery life… For the record, it’s not confirmed that the iPhone 14 Pro Max will feature a 5000 mAh battery, but there are some leaked promises of big gains in this area, so let’s see…

Apple in a battery league of its own: iPhone 13 Pro Max and iPhone 13 mini battery life is miraculous

Just to give those who aren’t familiar with some perspective, the iPhone 13 Pro Max has a 4352 mAh cell. As far as the capacity is concerned, this is on the average side of the spectrum, considering that even mid-range Android phones feature bigger batteries. If iPhone 14 Pro Max gets a 5000 mAh battery, that would make it 15% larger in capacity compared to Apple’s current top flagship and would put it on par with the Galaxy S22 Ultra and Pixel 6 Pro.Still, even now, the iPhone 13 Pro Max manages to outlast the Galaxy S22 Ultra by about 25% charge on average (what I mean is that it has 25% battery left when the Galaxy dies). If we compare the iPhone to the Pixel 6 Pro, we’ll see that Google’s most premium flagship delivers more or less 40% less battery life than Apple’s. Up to 40%. Not a typo. As a Pixel 6 Pro user, I confirm and… make a sad face.

And even if we assume that our own battery drain test and a dozen others on the internet don’t represent real-world use, as a Pixel 6 Pro user, I can confirm that battery life on Google’s 2021 flagship is poor. Especially for the size of the battery.

This is exactly the opposite of what our friend and colleague Joshua Swingle is experiencing. He’s boasting left and right, telling everyone how incredible the battery life on his iPhone 13 Pro Max is, and… he’s got a good point.

In fact, if we put the iPhone 13 Pro Max topic aside for a moment, I can confirm that even the tiny iPhone 13 mini, which I’ve had the chance to use for the past few weeks, seems to be giving me more or less the same battery endurance as my Pixel 6 Pro. This is absolutely unfathomable but also makes sense when you remember that the biggest iPhone outlasts the Pixel by a whopping 40%.Apple’s miniature iPhone 13 mini packs a laughable 2438 mAh cell, but what’s funnier, in that case, is that the Pixel 6 Pro and its huge 5003 mAh battery give me the same 6-7h of SoT (screen-on time).
Now, sure, the 13 mini comes with a 60Hz display, which also happens to be much smaller than the one on the Pixel, but even if we scale battery and screen specs to match, the iPhone should last about twice as long as the Pixel due to the huge gain in battery capacity.

Is there a chance iPhone 14 Pro Max will get a 5000 mAh battery and what would that mean for its battery life?

Now, before we continue with the speculations, let’s make it clear that as of now, we don’t know much about the iPhone 14 series’ battery sizes and, therefore, endurance.

However, as recently reported, we’ve come across a tweet by iHacktu iLeak that contains a bunch of bold claims about the new iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, such as 35% better GPU and 42% better CPU performance than iPhone 13 Pro. The tipster is also quoting “2h10” longer battery life (I’ll assume this applies to the Pro Max model). iHacktu has a positive track record of leaked OS updates, but not of hardware leaks, so we’ll take his claims with a grain of salt.

However, what’s also worth noting is that Twitter insider ShrimpApplePro, who does have a great track record of predicting Apple hardware upgrades (including the A16 Bionic chip and the new double-punch hole design on iPhone 14 Pro), has shared his fellow tipster’s tweet , and certainly didn’t seem to disapprove of it. So, at this point, I remain cautiously optimistic.

Improved display, chip, and battery on iPhone 14 Pro series, together with an Always-on display can take iPhone’s battery to a whole new level

Apart from all of that, it’s worth noting that the iPhone 14 Pro Max’s endurance won’t simply boil down to battery and screen size. Instead, there are a few other factors to consider, and that’s where other leaks and rumors about the iPhone 14 Pro series come in handy. This time, the rumors seem quite convincing.According to various leaks and rumors from multiple reliable sources, iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are expected to bring:

  • Bigger batteries compared to iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max
  • A new and more efficient 1-120Hz display (up from 10-120Hz on the iPhone 13 Pro series)
  • A new and more efficient A16 Bionic chip, which will still be 5nm, but less power-hungry, just like the upgrade from the A14 to the A15
A new, more efficient A16 Bionic chip will certainly contribute to improved endurance on the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, and so would the new 1-120Hz ProMotion screen, which would be able to refresh at as low as 1Hz when needed to preserve battery life.

Leaked iOS 16 Always-On-Display feature expected to debut on iPhone 14 series: Is it good or bad for battery life?

One additional thing to note here is that the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max (and possibly the vanilla iPhone 14 series) are finally expected to gain support for an AOD (always-on-display), which will let you keep your important information like time, date, battery percentage, and notification badges displayed, even when your screen is off.

However, depending on your usage habits, this could impact battery life positively or negatively. For example, suppose you’re someone who constantly checks their phones for messages and notifications. In that case, the AOD display will probably help preserve some battery life because this information will always be there, and you won’t need to unlock your phone and look for it constantly (which can consume more battery life, especially if it gets you to engage with the phone further).

However, you might not be someone who checks the time or your notifications often – let’s say you have an Apple Watch. In that case, the AOD might actually take away some of the battery life on your iPhone 14 Pro without giving you much in return, because it’ll be a turn on and draining a tiny bit of juice anyway – whether you look at it or not.

iPhone 14 Pro Max with a 5000 mAh cell and 3-day battery life would make me forgive Apple for the Lightning port (again)

Even if we don’t consider all possible efficiency improvements that the new hardware on iPhone 14 Pro Max might bring, Apple’s top new flagship should technically be able to get at least 15% better endurance compared to iPhone 13 Pro Max if it had a 5000 mAh cell. This means it would last a total of 40% longer than Galaxy S22 Ultra, and 55% more than the Pixel 6 Pro. But if we assume that the additional hardware upgrades on iPhone 14 Pro Max will further enhance battery life (as they should) , then we might be looking at some staggering differences between the 14 Pro Max and Android flagships – between 50-65%. Again – that also assume my wish for a 5000 mAh cell comes true…

As already mentioned, as of now, we can’t confirm whether iPhone 14 Pro Max will actually feature a 15% bigger battery than iPhone 13 Pro Max, at 5000 mAh. However, we know that big battery gains aren’t that improbable in Apple’s world. For example, the iPhone 13 Pro Max’s battery gained precisely 15% more capacity compared to the iPhone 12 Pro Max from 2020 and we know that the upcoming iPhone 14 Pro Max will be getting 0.2mm thicker compared to its predecessor, which is a positive sign .

Really, it now looks like a matter of time before Apple’s biggest (and heaviest) iPhone breaks the 5000 mAh mark and possibly manages to send us back in time with outrageous three days of endurance (Nokia who?). Now, will this be iPhone 14 Pro Max, iPhone 15 Pro Max, or the iPhone 16? We’ll have to wait for more leaks or September 2022 to tell.

Don’t forget that if one iPhone’s battery size goes up, usually the rest of the iPhones in the lineup will see some gains too. Apple is known to measure battery life by added hours of use (a metric that focuses on video playback), instead of capacity or screen-on-time. For example, last year, Apple claimed 1.5 extra hours of use on iPhone 13 Pro (versus iPhone 12 Pro), and 2.5 added hours of use on iPhone 13 Pro Max, compared to its predecessor.

Anyway, we’ll keep you updated with all the leaks and rumors surrounding the iPhone 14 series until they become official in September. Meanwhile you can bookmark our iPhone 14 hub, which should answer all your current and future questions about Apple’s upcoming flagships, which are less than three months away now!

And then… we’re off to the iPhone 15 series with… USB-C. Right?

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