Report: Sony Has Big Plans for Smartphone Batteries

Battery life -- longer battery life, that is -- remains a key issue in the mobile technology world. And Sony is moving to do something to help smartphone users everywhere get more battery for their bucks by 2020.

According to news reports, Sony is developing a high-capacity rechargeable battery to replace lithium-ion batteries in the next five years. Japanese technology site Nikkei revealed Sony plans to increase energy density per volume by 40 percent -- from the current 700Wh/L to 1,000 Wh/L -- by tapping into a sulfur compound as an electrode material.

Sony could not immediately be reached for comment, but reports suggest the company will commercialize the newfangled batteries for smartphones initially before rolling them out for other uses, including robots.

Welcome News

We caught up with Roger Entner, principal analyst at Recon Analytics, to get his thoughts on the new battery innovation. He told us this doesn?EU?t appear to represent a revolutionary upgrade for smartphone batteries.

?EU?Typically we get somewhere between five and 10 percent more capacity out of batteries per year,?EU? Entner said. ?EU?So, this is roughly on track with what we would expect anyway.?EU?

The bottom line: Smartphone users are always looking for more power, so Entner said any progress companies make is always welcome news.

?EU?The smartphone market is on the cutting edge driving high power consumption over a longer time,?EU? Entner said. ?EU?A battery like the one Sony is proposing allows us to either make batteries even smaller or, if we keep the same battery size, make the phones run longer.?EU?

Other Industry Moves

On other battery fronts, Huawei Technology Corp. recently made a big industry move to help consumers who wait until the last minute to get charged up -- or just use their devices so much that they need frequent rapid charges.

Last month, Huawei's research and development subsidiary Watt...

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