Battery Life - A Magnitude Shift

By now many will have heard positive things about the new iPhone 11s' battery life. As we have covered in the introduction, possibly the biggest changes to Apple’s line-up this year is the device’s vastly increased battery capacities. The Pro models in particular have seen significant increases: the 11 Pro gets a 3046mAh battery which represents a 14.5% increase compared to the XS, and the 11 Pro Max gets a 3969mAh battery which represents a very large 25% increase. The Pro Max is now the first Apple device which has a battery capacity comparable to Android phones out there, some of which have offered similar large capacities for a few years now.

iPhone XS Max vs. iPhone 11 Pro Max Batteries (Image Courtesy iFixit)

The regular iPhone 11 sees only a 5.7% bump to up to 3110mAh, which isn’t all that big upgrade compared to the XR. But it also doesn’t increase its weight nearly as much as the Pro models.

Web Browsing Battery Life 2016 (WiFi)

The battery results in our web test are outstanding. Apple in this generation has gone from being average in battery life to showcasing some of the best results we’ve seen in the market.

What is very interesting here is how our absolute test runtimes end up compared to Apple’s marketing claims. Apple has promised +1H, +4H and +5H of battery life for the 11, 11 Pro and the 11 Pro Max compared to their predecessors, and what we measured is 1.08H, 3.9H and 5.27H, which is pretty damn near Apple’s promoted figures, pointing out to some very similar testing conditions between our test and Apple’s internal metrics.

If we break this down a bit and theorize a bit, if we take the XS Max 10.31H result, multiply by 1.25x for the increased battery capacity (12.88H), multiply again naively by 1.15x for the more efficient screen (14.82H), we’re left with a ~5% margin which would account for the more efficient SoC. Give or take margin of error here or there, the results we’re seeing shouldn’t be all too surprising. The math would also check out for the iPhone 11 without a newer display: 5% increased battery capacity and an on average ~3% more efficient SoC.

There’s not much to say about the new iPhone 11 series' battery life other than it's exemplary. More importantly, Apple has managed to finally catch up and exceed the battery life of the LCD iPhone 8 and Plus models from 2 years ago.

Display Measurement & Power Camera - Daylight Evaluation: Triple Cameras


View All Comments

  • trparky - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    "So while the A13 delivers class leading performance, it's probably not going to be very compelling for users coming from last year's A12 devices; the bigger impact will be felt coming from older devices."

    Like no shit! I upgraded from an older iPhone 7 Plus to the iPhone 11 Pro and comparatively speaking, the iPhone 11 Pro is stupid quick (that's a good thing!!!) Everything about it is so much faster. App launch times are at least twice as fast on the iPhone 11 Pro (vs. iPhone 7 Plus) and the battery life is just... wow. I don't have words to describe how good it is on the iPhone 11 Pro when compared to the iPhone 7 Plus.
  • Total Meltdowner - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    Twice as fast a 4 seconds is 2 seconds. Battery life of a 3600mah battery is still going to require a charge every time you make it to work or home. Bleh. Reply
  • name99 - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link Reply
  • Alistair - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    Did you miss the part of the review where he showed the battery life is the best ever? Beating some 5000mah Android phones? So NO, you don't need to charge it every time you get home or back from work. Reply
  • melgross - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    Say what you want, but on a daily basis, it’s very noticeable. When it’s different as in 1/4 sec to 1/2 sec, come back and talk. Reply
  • whiteiphoneproblems - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    Unless you have a 12 hour commute, this seems pretty unlikely. Reply
  • damianrobertjones - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    The mate 20 is included in the battery test, so why wouldn't the Mate 20 X also be there? Probably as it has the best battery life? Not sure. Reply
  • dudedud - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    He only includes devices that he has tested. Reply
  • Andrei Frumusanu - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    Yes, we never got our hands on the 20X. Reply
  • Dragonstongue - Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - link

    if Apple will slow down phone etc as battery ages, IMO they should do like SSD / HDD makers etc do by having X set aside "longevity reserve" to prevent folks from spend more $$$ to bring back new phone that using (doing normal things, let alone higher power req. stuff) chews through a not so "market leading" capacity (seeing as most phone makers and phone in general do NOT slow down / reduce performance as battery ages)


    maybe just maybe they can put more "premium" into the thought/design...maybe at some point they can also do a "whitelist" for 3rd party apps etc instead of FORCED purchase / constant update crud just so can use the darn fool thing.


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