Editor's note: This article was originally published on July 31, but was updated on February 23 to include a YouTube video.
The search for power is eternal. The phones, our connections to the virtual world and IRL, almost never have enough energy to last a whole day. Our lives are turning into endless hunts for places to charge. Even charging at home can be difficult, especially if you share your space with other people and use several devices on a daily basis. However, these problems can be solved through planning.
Unfortunately, there is no universal loading strategy. Everyone has to devise routines that work best for their lifestyles, habits and daily use of devices. However, I have spoken with a couple of experts and a lot of Verge employees about the load, and I can offer you some comforting words on how to get the most out of your load and how to update your work places and homes to create ideal charging environments. .
Let's start with the basics.
Where am I charging?
Take stock of your life. Obviously, you will want to charge at home, but you also need to charge your world to the test. I keep a Lightning cable running, for example, that I plug into the USB charging port of my workstation. I also keep an adapter and a cable plugged in at home. This is the easiest way to stay constantly in juice: have cables wherever you go. You could also consider a charger in the car. Or in all the rooms of the house. Or in your winter home. Or in your boat Seriously, place charging cables everywhere you go. Try to keep an external battery in your bag as well and charge it immediately after using it.
What should I buy to keep my things loaded?
Photo of James Bareham / The Verge
A full load routine requires many things. You will need cables, USB adapters, external batteries and, perhaps, new power outlets. Most Verge employees live with Anker products on Amazon for cheap cables. (I tend to order AmazonBasics.) Generally speaking, a decent practice rule seems to be at least one power cord and one adapter for each person living in your home. You also need a car / cable charger and a cable for your workplace. Yes, you can keep your phone alive with only one cable, but that's a big pain. No one wants to carry their cable all the time.
Of course, some cars now come with an optional built-in wireless charging platform. If you are buying a new car, this could be something to consider. In general, it is worth investing in wireless charging pads, as long as it is a person dedicated to Android. (At least until Apple makes wireless charging something, if it ever does).
Some employees of Verge (and my father) have made real changes in their homes by installing USB plugs. This makes it easy to charge without an adapter. I can not recommend this route, but if it feels good to you, it might be worth considering. It could change your life. Maybe.
How much time should I charge?
I do not know where this myth started, but it's a common idea that you should not leave your phone plugged in after it's fully charged. It will fade even more the battery, that thinks. I spoke with Daniel Steingart, associate professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Princeton University, about whether this is true. No, he says. In fact, "the easiest thing is to keep [your phone] plugged in all the time, as much as possible." Modern smartphones do a good job in battery management, he says. (Android O, for example, is supposed to be delivered with better battery management in regards to applications in the background). Once a phone's battery reaches 100 percent, extra energy does not flow into it. The battery remains constant.
That said, maybe going up to 100 percent is not the best thing to do. Venkat Srinivasan, director of the Argonne Collaborative Center for Energy Storage Science (ACCESS), tells me that he keeps his phone's battery in a narrow range, such as between 30 and 80 percent. He says that at the 100 percent mark, certain reactions occur within the battery that eventually degrade the electrolytes and further depreciate the battery. I admire Srinivasan for not exceeding 80 percent with his phone, but for most of us, it probably will not work.
It is ideal to keep the device below 100 percent and within a narrow range, but charging it fully is more practical for most people. It will not completely destroy your battery either. Most of us should channel Steingart's mindset and simply keep our phones plugged in forever. Those destructive reactions have already occurred, so it is best to let the battery remain in that state.
My battery is very low Help now!
Most phones have low power, eco or battery saving modes. On an iPhone, you can access the low power mode through the battery settings. It will limit application updates in the background and automatic downloads. It will also limit the visual effects and activate the automatic lock to 30 seconds. Samsung includes a similar way of saving energy on their phones, like Google with their Pixel phones. Take advantage of these settings when you are running low or need to save battery.
The airplane mode will also charge your phone a little faster, if you are in desperate need and are willing to part with your device. I always switch to airplane mode if I am loading my phone into a bar. This gives me a slightly faster load but also prevents texts or calls from entering, which is ideal when my phone is out of reach.
You should also occasionally control which applications are absorbing most of the battery life and determine if you want to continue letting them run in the background. Do you need that random game that you downloaded to constantly update?
Listen, all the batteries are going to die over time. Over time, they get worse when loading. It is only reality. I'm sorry I have to cut it. You also really have no choice about your battery supplier. Smartphones are shipped with batteries inside, and currently, most are not removable. You get what they give you. The phones are meant to be used and appreciated. In the worst case, you will have to buy a new battery and install it. That's not so bad, right?
Update 7/31, 12:31 PM ET: Updated to clarify the ideas of Venkat and Dan.