I think it’s safe to say that one of the most important things in a phone is battery life. You can have the best phone in the world, but that means nothing if it can’t last a day. To help you better predict how your battery will perform throughout the day, Google is adding a new ‘smart battery’ feature to Pixel devices.
The best gifts for Android users
Google took to its support forums yesterday to talk about a new feature which is already rolling out to Pixel smartphones. “Smart battery” is designed to give users better estimates on what to expect from their battery through the day.
For a long time, Android’s battery estimate chart has been created simply from assumptions, as Google explains. If you used a certain amount of battery life in a given hour, the estimate used that to guess your usage through the day.
Previously, your phone would estimate your battery loss with simple assumptions. If you’ve used about 10% per hour over the past few hours, we would guess you will keep using 10% per hour. As you might expect, this wasn’t always very accurate.
Needless to say, that’s not a very accurate way to chart usage as our usage generally varies throughout the day. One hour we might barely use our device, but another could be filled with gaming and streaming videos.
With “Smart battery,” Pixel devices will learn from your usage habits how to best estimate your battery life. An “on-device model” evaluates your battery usage habits day by day to better predict how you’ll use your phone and how the battery will be used up.
This is definitely a minor change, but it’s a really handy one. Not only can you see on a chart how your battery will be used through the day, but the battery settings menu will give you a much more accurate estimate on the amount of time you can use your phone until the battery runs out.
Google says that this feature is live already, so if you’ve got a Pixel or Pixel 2 device, it should have gone live within the past few days and already started learning from your usage.