Samsung Galaxy S2 Review: Exposing the battery life

 

By Posted 2 May 2011, 09:31

For those who have read a Samsung Galaxy S2 review, you will know two things, it is most probably the best Android handset on the market, as well as the best smartphone full stop. Those are two big statements, but from what we have heard, there could be an element of truth. However, we thought we would take a closer look into exposing the battery life of said device.

Samsung was able to include a few new features to help battery life in this new handset compared to the older Galaxy S. One way how Samsung was able to do this was due to its new 4.4-inch OLED display, as it does not only use one single backlight. This means that only the pixels needed will be lit, which results in darker blacks – something that is very important if watching videos and conserving battery life.

Also See: Samsung Unpacked IFA 2014 live stream

With this added new feature, users are able to optimize battery life by not going for colorful wallpaper, or choosing to do other things that do not require huge amounts of color. Engadget found that from all the current Android handsets on the market, the Galaxy S2 was able to stand up well in battery tests. They found with 20 hours – ten of which were used to play with the phone – there was still 15 percent battery life left.

There are two reasons why it is always hard to squeeze more battery life from a new smartphone; the first is all the extra features, and the second is current battery technology. We as a consumer always want our new handsets to be faster than before, this always comes at a price with how long a battery can last, you only have to look at the Droid Incredible to know what we are talking about.

However, we can rest assured that the likes of Apple, HTC, Samsung and Motorola all have new battery technology in the pipeline, but it is anyone’s guess how long we will have to wait to see it in their future handsets.

Are you impressed with the Samsung Galaxy S2’s battery life?

  • jonah

    After a very long time, Samsung brought such smartphone which may take its very strong position in the UK market and as the experts say, Samsung glaxy S2 is the second handset after HTC Desire, which has got very huge attraction of the users. with the help of its very wide display, the handset would be very good source of fabulous experience. though i have gone through various web portals to get full details about its deals, but there is an uk based website free3gmobilephoneoffers which includes very god information about the handset.

    • Roy Chin

      Hi guys is there a fix for the battery life? 8 hours is not going to make it for my long days..

      • Anonymous

        The only fix is to buy another battery and swap them out. You can get them for cheap just about anywhere online.

  • pastai

    There is a graph usage of battery life on engadget site coming with their review (look at the blu bars on the graph that show the real amount of time in which the phone has been used). If you study it, you should find that battery life doesn't seems to correspond what is described in their article.
    You can see that when used, the battery drop 55% in 4.5 hours (it should correspond to approximatively 8 hours in full use). It is logical to think that a phone whose battery drop 55% in 4.5 hours can't be fully used during 10 hours.
    It seems to me more likely to suppose that the phone has been (really) used 4.5 hours and the battery last 20 hours.
    Look carefully at this graph on engadged site.

  • Lee Davis

    I have a Galaxy S2 and the battery life is awful. With minimal use, screen brightness at the lowest and auto brightness turned off, kill all apps after closing, wi-fi off when not needed, no background syncing except email which is on 5min polling and GPS never on, I can just about get 9 hours out of it. Oh and I have sent 2 SMS and made zero calls today!

    I am experimenting tomorrow with not kill apps, but letting Android do it's stuff.

    I seriously need to order 2 more batteries.

    • Kat

      Phew, i thoight i had a bad battery!!

      I can sometimes get 8 hours out of my battery. Likewise i kill the apps and have the screen brightness on minimal.

      I upgraded from the Galaxy s running Android 2.1 but the battery life is awful compared to the galaxy S :(

    • Stephan

      In the 12 years I buy high end smartphones I never had a device that I can use without a charge during the day … Desire, Galaxy S, Iphone 4 or 3 or 3gs or 2, Desire S, etc etc etc … All flat witht my use between 1pm and 4pm … Only a BB does go for a full day or longer, but that phone is boring as hell … :)
      That said my current Galaxy S is the best phone I ever had, and with the wider screen, lower weigth, smaller design and LED flash of the S2 I think that will become my best phone ever :D
      Ps: I remember also the first HP Smartphones with touch screen/gps/keyboard and phone who where flat around 10AM :D and phone quality was awfull bad :)

    • Lewd

      Strange, I all but abused my s2 for an entire day, watching videos etc etc, and it still lasted a good 14 hours…

  • Paul

    This phone can need some serious playing with to get battery life right, out the box with few new apps put on i was getting 5-9 hrs battery life. Including over night with no use! ouch.

    After lots of messing about and turning off every function possible, including removing all widgets and apps from home screen now got 97% battery left after 10 hrs! (with no use) Bit more like it.

    Now to see what i can turn back on! Find what was Killing it.

    • Adi

      So you have a blank home screen and then just click 'Applications' and navigate to where you need to go from there?

      Granted, it removes some of the functionality of an Android phone, but if the battery life is extended to such and amount…

    • j d

      Thanks for the info Paul.  I had atrocious battery life too, like everyone else.  I followed your advice.  I turned off every possible feature and this helped.  The thing that sorted me out most was removing all the widgets ( and some apps ) from the home screen.  I now have about 25% battery used after 24 hours, and that’s with a lot of usage.  I’ll slowly add stuff back onto the home page and see what drains the power. 

      Also, if you do “settings->memory->running” you will see a load of tasks that are running. Try killing most of them all off.  You will be amazed at how many things are running in the background.

    • j d

      Thanks for the info Paul.  I had atrocious battery life too, like everyone else.  I followed your advice.  I turned off every possible feature and this helped.  The thing that sorted me out most was removing all the widgets ( and some apps ) from the home screen.  I now have about 25% battery used after 24 hours, and that’s with a lot of usage.  I’ll slowly add stuff back onto the home page and see what drains the power. 

      Also, if you do “settings->memory->running” you will see a load of tasks that are running. Try killing most of them all off.  You will be amazed at how many things are running in the background.

    • j d

      Thanks for the info Paul.  I had atrocious battery life too, like everyone else.  I followed your advice.  I turned off every possible feature and this helped.  The thing that sorted me out most was removing all the widgets ( and some apps ) from the home screen.  I now have about 25% battery used after 24 hours, and that’s with a lot of usage.  I’ll slowly add stuff back onto the home page and see what drains the power. 

      Also, if you do “settings->memory->running” you will see a load of tasks that are running. Try killing most of them all off.  You will be amazed at how many things are running in the background.

    • j d

      Thanks for the info Paul.  I had atrocious battery life too, like everyone else.  I followed your advice.  I turned off every possible feature and this helped.  The thing that sorted me out most was removing all the widgets ( and some apps ) from the home screen.  I now have about 25% battery used after 24 hours, and that’s with a lot of usage.  I’ll slowly add stuff back onto the home page and see what drains the power. 

      Also, if you do “settings->memory->running” you will see a load of tasks that are running. Try killing most of them all off.  You will be amazed at how many things are running in the background.

    • j d

      Thanks for the info Paul.  I had atrocious battery life too, like everyone else.  I followed your advice.  I turned off every possible feature and this helped.  The thing that sorted me out most was removing all the widgets ( and some apps ) from the home screen.  I now have about 25% battery used after 24 hours, and that’s with a lot of usage.  I’ll slowly add stuff back onto the home page and see what drains the power. 

      Also, if you do “settings->memory->running” you will see a load of tasks that are running. Try killing most of them all off.  You will be amazed at how many things are running in the background.

    • j d

      Thanks for the info Paul.  I had atrocious battery life too, like everyone else.  I followed your advice.  I turned off every possible feature and this helped.  The thing that sorted me out most was removing all the widgets ( and some apps ) from the home screen.  I now have about 25% battery used after 24 hours, and that’s with a lot of usage.  I’ll slowly add stuff back onto the home page and see what drains the power. 

      Also, if you do “settings->memory->running” you will see a load of tasks that are running. Try killing most of them all off.  You will be amazed at how many things are running in the background.

  • Hugh

    I just got my Nexus s 4g from Sprint, and while it does not have a dual core processor and some of the bells and whistles of the newer phones, I'm getting up to 18 hours of battery life out of it. I have made calls, used the wifi tethering, browse the internet downloaded apps, texted and more. I would say that's normal use. Before this phone, I had the HTC EVO 4g and had to really tweak it to get 7 hours out of it so with this phone I'm more than happy. I chose better battery life over the higher specs, but the Nexus S isn't too shabby either. :)

  • Carla

    I seem to be extremely unlucky… After 2hrs use battery is at 43%… So taking phone back Monday to exchange for another. Hopefully it was just a faulty batch or so. If with new phone its still the same (and yes most stuff was turned off as in wifi-sync,screen bright at auto, task killer, etc…) then I'm changing phone. Shame because its a stunning one. My previous phone which was stolen (hence this purchase) was the Blackberry Bold 9700 and battery was great. 2-3 days with regular use. Lets hope its second time lucky :)

  • Jesus

    The Samsung Galaxy S2 has gotten a lot of great reviews, and it’s no wonder why when it comes equipped with a dual core processor, 1080p camera, and has awesome new user interface features. I cannot wait to get this phone, especially since I have an employee Sling receiver from DISH Network. With the Sling receiver, I can stream live and recorded TV to my Android phone anywhere I have 3G coverage or WiFi. So with the Galaxy S2 on the 4G network, you can expect it to be very fast with any task.

  • willis

    I'm now on my second s 2 after rubbish battery life on my firat one. i am having exactly the same problems! Dropped to 30% in 6.5 hours… I quote samsung by saying " the galexy s2 should last 20hrs with heavy use"

  • Emil

    my phone looses 17% battery in under an hour just using internet and battery saving mode on :'(

  • dude

    Well. i have desire HD bt HTC, and i can use phone 3 days, when i wanna cal i just make online, then after that just offline,SAVES bigtime!

    remove accounts, just google account!
    my battery does not drop at all when screen is sleeping. i had 100% 14 hrs went and t had 98% left!!!!

    thats no backroud apps,batt save mode, offline and no connections.

  • 00dave

    Switched everything off (including the gps which was switching itself back on somehow) and after regular use including using facebook, texting, making calls using the aps to entertain my niece and several hours of mp3 playing through both headphones and internal speakers and my s2 is on it’s third day without a charge. You guys muct have some seriously bad batches or you haven’t figured out how to switch everything off. It’s actually saying atm that after 3d 13h 51m its just dropped to the penultimate bar on the graph. 

  • Anonymous

     Mine and my wifes battery life are awfull on the s2. barely last 8 hours with not a lot of use let alone heavy use. ok i could close all the widgets and everything off the screens but whats the point in having them there then? its what makes the phone.

    I did close some of the useless widgets like news and finance but even so the battery is still dire 3 phone calls 2 e mails and 20-30 mins on games, 9 hours and its dead.

  • Anonymous

    Guys, if you want good battery life on an Android phone, do this:

    -Root the phone (xdadevelopers can help)
    -Flash to the stock ROM
    -Use the PowerBar widget or SwitchPro to disable WiFi, 3G/4G and bluetooth when not in use.
    -Install SetCPU. Underclocks your CPU for a major improvement in battery life. (available on the Android market and elsewhere)
    -Install Advanced Task Killer. Disable unnecessary services.

    With these changes, I get around 4-5 days of idle usage on a single-core 1GHz Xperia X10a with a 1500mAh battery.

    The S 2 uses a battery sucking, dual-core 1.2GHz CPU, but packs a 1650mAh battery. I am anxious to hear how long it can last by underclocking and disabling services. I have read that it may underclock to 200MHz by default, so I am not sure how much the battery life can actually be improved.

  • Anonymous

    Guys, if you want good battery life on an Android phone, do this:

    -Root the phone (xdadevelopers can help)
    -Flash to the stock ROM
    -Use the PowerBar widget or SwitchPro to disable WiFi, 3G/4G and bluetooth when not in use.
    -Install SetCPU. Underclocks your CPU for a major improvement in battery life. (available on the Android market and elsewhere)
    -Install Advanced Task Killer. Disable unnecessary services.

    With these changes, I get around 4-5 days of idle usage on a single-core 1GHz Xperia X10a with a 1500mAh battery.

    The S 2 uses a battery sucking, dual-core 1.2GHz CPU, but packs a 1650mAh battery. I am anxious to hear how long it can last by underclocking and disabling services. I have read that it may underclock to 200MHz by default, so I am not sure how much the battery life can actually be improved.

  • vivek pandey

    very bad battery life on my sg2. Gives only8-9 hrs on a full recharge after average use. This is with data mode disabled.

  • totalvr67

    My GSII usually lasts about 15-20 hours with regular internet browsing and MP3′s.  The only problem I have is sometimes if I’m browsing the web for an hour the phone starts to lose battery (1% every 5 or 6 minutes).  But when I looked at battery usage I realised it was a program called “Wifi sharing” and I just kill that and its fine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=670444067 Valerie Andrews

    Turned just about everything off so it’s a very expensive basic phone, and I’m only getting 8-9 hours before there’s only 20% left. I’ve made one phone call in that time for 15 minutes, that’s it, nothing else. I have a battery graph and monitor running so I could check the battery life. I charge it for 8 to 12 hours a night (only a week old) and to be honest it’s a bloody expensive waste of all these gadgets you can’t use unless you have a portable battery charger you carry around everywhere. Why have a Porche with a smart car engine to power it, or has my battery had it??
    It got incredibly hot the other day just checking my emails!! Not impressed with the battery life, but at this rate I’ll never get to see how it works because it would have died before I could get any functionality out of it! I really want to like it??!!! Honestly!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/mrpjdrury Philip John-Henry Drury

    Dropped 70% in three hours with not a lot of use.

  • Artxtiannapiza

    how about the 2400 mAh battery? any feedback? does anyone have tried it?

    • Davey1271182

      yeah its still not good

    • Hlopez7

       I just now installed a 3500 mAh battery on my Samsung Galaxy S2. in fact it’s on charge as we speak. I play golf and use the golflogix app and it really drained my standard battery. Guess I’ll find out tomorrow, playing golf again.

  • moe

    bad battery on a smart phone is not acceptable I should’ve bought iphone

  • moe

    bad battery on a smart phone is not acceptable I should’ve bought iphone

  • Gkaya1336

    First, charge the phone fully
    Then go to task manager and kill allmost all tasks except the ones your actually using like swype and wifi. Repeat this if you need to power off (very important)
    Next, put the screen brightness down to <25% and turn auto off
    Now do the obvious like switching off bluetooth, gps, data and 3g if you are not using them.
    Dont install any battery, cpu or other monitoring programs because most of them are badly written and can drain your battery.
    After playing around with the phone, drain the battery then fully recharge again. This should only be done once of twice then max once a month. Usually its best to charge from 25 to 75 percent (no reference but I read it somewhere!)
    if playing a game the battery will drain fast because the processor is so fast so enjoy!

  • Mads

    Android 2.3.3 Gingerbread has a battery drain problem, and if you run your Samsung Galaxy SII with all features and and a lot of widgets etc, then the battery goes fast. Just check out the internet, there is some good advice that helped me alot. Update to 2.3.4 and it’ll be much better. My Samsung Galaxy SII gets 30 hours of battery at normal use. about 15 hours if i use it a lot…

  • Mike60174

    You’ve got to be kidding. When my iPhone died just a month out of warranty, the salesman at the AT&T store convinced me to go with the “faster” Galaxy Sii. The only thing fast about this phone is battery drain. An hour and a half of playing a simple solitaire game, reading a few email in between, and the battery is gone! And re-charging? 6 to 8 hours. Maybe I was spoiled by Apple, but this thing is more bother than it is worth, always charged down when I need it. I have stopped using games and other apps almost completely just to have reliable voice and mail.