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Whatever you did AT&T, thank you.


Anyone who visits MD regularly knows that I am a bit obsessive when it comes to battery usage/drain. I long ago gave up trying to conserve power and instead enjoy my phones to the fullest, while keeping a charging source nearly. I am also somewhat boring (unless you want to talk tech) so my routine does not change much from day to day.

I monitor my battery usage continuously, not because I really care where it’s going. Call it more of a curiosity. Since getting my Lumia 900 in April, battery drain while the phone is sleeping (maybe with an occasional glance at an email or message) has been very consistent at about 3.5 to 4.5% per hour, depending on the strength of my LTE/4G signal. That’s with 8 or 9 background tasks, 5 mails accounts syncing, and pretty much everything else turned on; WiFi, location, feedback, updates, etc. And lots of Live Tiles.

So, I was a bit surprised last week when I got home from work one night an noticed more battery remaining that expected. I mean considerably more. My plan was to check a few times today during the day, for battery drain, signal strength, etc. But things got busy and I only glanced at my phone twice in seven hours. When I got home tonight I took a quick look at my phone and was surprised to see that I had 82% battery remaining, after being off charge for 8 hours. That’s 2.25% per hour, unprecedented for my phone. The chart above shows today’s usage. The first blip is me browsing the web as I do every morning for about 1.5 hours today. Dropped to 84% before I topped off the battery when I jumped into the shower. The next straight line is the Nokia phenomenon where the battery displays 100% till it drops down to 90%, and then begins incrementing from that point on. That lasted till 3:30pm (took it off charge at 11:30am). And the rest is the drain from 3:30 till 7:30pm.

Aaron posted a few days ago that AT&T had recently expanded coverage of LTE to Orlando, FL. Well, ok but I have had LTE on my L900 since I picked it up in April. But maybe what AT&T meant was that they now made LTE “right” in Orlando, FL. I checked over the weekend and again today to confirm that I was connected to LTE (WiFi is on 24/7 so data could turn off and I might not notice), and my phone was in fact tingling all day (stereo between the phone and desktop) when a new push message arrived. I got 20Mbps down yesterday and 17.5Mbps today, so yeah I have LTE. Still only getting 3 or occasionally 4 bars at home and in the office, so the signal didn’t get stronger, but maybe it got more efficient. Not sure. Can’t think of anything else that would reduce my idle battery consumption by nearly 50%.

How about you? Have you noticed the battery lasting longer in an AT&T LTE coverage area? Am I just lucky. Better go pick up a few more Power Balls before Wednesday.

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