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Old May 13th, 2010, 08:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Batteries explained *important update*

After some further research, I've discovered that I have made a mistake. It doesn't really change the way most people use the phone, but it is important to know. Since this forum has no strikethrough option & I want to be transparent about my corrections, I will put incorrect information into quotes.

I know a fair bit about batteries because I have been selling them for 15 years, but I am not a scientist, or battery engineer or whatever the battery makers are called, so some of my information may be a little inaccurate, but I doubt it.

Before I start, let me tell you that the following information does not apply to all batteries, only the kind that we are specifically concerned with, the one in our Desire. Many, many devices use the same kind of batteries though, & this information will also apply to them (portable laptop computers for example). I will explain what the kinds of batteries are, & how to tell them apart, at the bottom.

Quote:
As ridiculous as it sounds, it's best to never let a rechargeable lithium battery discharge at all.
This turns out to be not quite right. The best way to treat a rechargeable lithium battery is to discharge about 40-60% of the battery before recharging it, and about once a month deep cycle the battery by letting it drain until the phone turns off.


Quote:
Obviously, that makes the battery pointless if you never take it off the charger, since your phone is no longer mobile. The compromise is to charge it whenever it's practical to do so. regardless of how much drain the battery has had, 1% or 90%. Finally, it's best to leave it on the charger even after the battery is fully charged.
Clearly, it will not always be practical to wait for the battery to get within a certain range before recharging it, so the best option is still to charge it more frequently.

The most damaging thing you can do to your battery is to completely drain it so that it is totally flat.

Thus ends the simple instructions on how to best care for your battery. But there is still a lot more to know about them, so read on if you're interested.

I have no idea whether this is true of this particular phone or not (because I have not had a flat battery yet), but as far as I know, all of these high tech devices that run on lithium batteries have a battery protection built into them that prevents the battery from completely draining. In other words, when the battery level gets critically low, the phone will shut itself down (note that critical in this case does not refer to when the battery indicator turns red. Critical in this case refers to a point far beyond that). (Yes, the phone does indeed have a critical shutdown, and the battery has a 2nd safety cutout, but if the battery one ever trips, then the battery wont charge again without professional equipment)

So you don't need to panic if the battery gets low & you can't charge it, however, you might want to worry a little if the phone has shut itself off and you wont be able to charge it for several days. Even when a battery is not being used, it's still discharging a little. That's why you don't have a full charge on the battery when you take it out of the box for the first time.

Rechargeable lithium batteries do not like heat, so if possible, try to avoid using the phone in hot environments.

If possible, you should only do one of the 3 things below at a time:
~High drain use (like playing a game that pushes the limits of the phone's abilities)
~Charging the phone
~having the phone in a hot environment (more than 40c/104f)

The batteries will last longer the cooler they are, but they don't like to be frozen, so never freeze the battery.


Note also that you can check the battery temp in the settings or many battery monitor apps. Try to keep it under 40c.

One final note about the Desire in particular before I go on to more general battery information:

There is no good explanation for why the battery seems to get better after a week or two of use. The only explanation is that people are simply using the phone more than they realise because it's a new toy. The only other possible explanation is that HTC have a software bug that is not accurately representing the battery life at the start of the phones use.


Deep cycling the battery:
This refers to intentionally using the battery until it is critically low before recharging it again. It's probably worthwhile doing this a few times when you first get the battery, but the benefits are not really that great. Doing this for every charge cycle is not good for the life of these types of batteries.

Deep cycling the battery is not good for the life of the battery, the more often you do it, the fewer times the battery will be able to be recharged. These batteries do not suffer from the typical memory effect which is explained below, but the battery will probably suffer from what's referred to as the digital memory effect. So, a deep cycle is recommended about every 30 cycles or once a month.

I only recommend deep cycling once when you first get the battery.

The memory affect:
This refers to batteries behaving like they have a smaller capacity than they actually have. This does not happen on lithium batteries, so I will go into further detail on this later.

The digital memory effect:
This refers to the electronic battery meter no longer accurately indicating the battery life. A single deep cycle charge is enough to fix this, and performed monthly will prevent it from occurring on the device. Doing this once when you first get the battery is definitely a good idea.


Cell Vs Battery:
A cell is basically a single container with all the chemicals needed to produce electricity whereas a battery is a bunch of cells all joined together.

Disambiguation: some parts of the world, most notably, North America refer to mobile phones as Cell phones, this refers to the service range of a wireless tower or some such thing. I dunno much about this, ask an American

It's important to note that these terms get mixed up all the time, and it's usually regional, North Americans tend to call both kinds cells & Australians tend to call both kinds batteries. Go figure.

In the end though, it doesn't really matter whether you call them a battery or a cell, the difference is really only academic.

Battery Types:
Note that this is by no means an exhaustive list of the kinds of batteries that are available, only the most common ones, ranked from best to worst. For example, a citrus fruit with a couple of nails in it is a cell, but it's not useful to know for the purpose of this post. Nor is it very useful to know that button (or coin) batteries come in a type called silver oxide.

Battery kinds:
I need another term for explanation purposes, but it's not really accurate, just an easy way to tell the 2 apart. Lets call the 2 terms common & specialised.

Common refers to batteries that you find in things like kids toys and torches. They have codes that everybody recognises, like the following:
AA, C, D, 9v, UM-1, UM-2, UM-3 or UM-4.

Specialised refers to the kind of battery included with the Desire. The are not universal batteries and [usually] only fit in the one device they are designed for.

Memory effect continued:
The so called memory affect would be better described with the name Burn In, but memory effect is what it's called.

Burn In would be better because it describes the effect better, especially since most of us are probably familiar with this term with regards to display screens. In the case of batteries, it basically occurs when you repeatedly recharge a battery before it has completely discharged. Essentially if you recharge it at 50% all the time, the battery will burn 50% into it's "memory" and eventually will only work at 50% capacity all the time. there are ways to reverse this in a very limited way, but the results are usually not very good, and will only partially repair the damage, and the problem will re-occur. The ways that you can kind of "fix" a memory affect are:

Deep cycling the battery several times in a row.

High current discharging &/or charging. Basically overworking the battery, putting more strain on it than it's designed for. This is probably the most effective, but don't do it, the chance of things like explosion is too high.

freezing the battery.


Rechargeable
Lithum (Li)
Nickel-Metal Hydride (Nimh)
Nickel Cadmium (Nicad)
Im not sure where lead acid batteries fit into this list, probably second, but since they are used in far different situations (like car batteries) they are not really relevant to this crazily long post.


Disposable
Lithium
Alkaline
Carbon zinc
I didn't include the abbreviations for these because they are not referred to by that, at least not in Australia.

Lithium
These batteries, confusingly, come in rechargeable & disposable versions, but it's generally pretty obvious which kind of one you have.

I mean if it comes with a rechargeable mobile phone, then it's rechargeable (specialised), but if it comes with a smoke detector, which has no charger, then it's disposable (common).

There is a more accurate way to tell though, a rechargeable lithium cell (cell, not battery) is 3 volts (actually, they vary from 2.8-3.2, but let's just say 3 for simplicity).

Whereas a disposable is 1.5 volts. So if you have a battery, like those common square ones with the 2 connectors at one end (9v batteries in Australia) they are obviously 9 volts which can be divided by 1.5 volts 6 times evenly. Which means that 9v batteries actually have 6 cells inside them. If you pull them apart, they often contain button batteries inside them, but I do not recommend opening a battery if you are not a professional battery repairer who has had training (they contain acid & can explode or create toxic smoke).

This btw, is why you can not get rechargeable lithium pencil cells (like AA or UM-3), because they have not figured out how to make a 1.5v version.

Disposable ones are common cell & battery types
Rechargeable ones are specialised cell & battery types, they don't suffer from the memory effect.

Nickel-Metal Hydride
These cells are 1.2 volts They come in both common & specialised. These batteries can suffer from memory effect, but it's not as common or pronounced as the next battery type.
It should be noted that in common form, these are interchangeable with disposables, even though disposables are 1.5 volts.

Nickel Cadmium
These cells are 1.2 volts They pretty much only come in common, but there are a few specialized. These cells also come in battery types.
These cells do suffer from the memory effect. Frankly, these batteries are so outdated that they really should not be making or selling them anymore. & they are finally started to disappear.

It should be noted that in common form, these are interchangeable with disposables, even though disposables are 1.5 volts.

Alkaline
These are the most common of the common batteries & cells. I can't think of a single specialised alkaline battery, but one probably exists somewhere for some obscure device. Disposable batteries don't suffer from the memory effect.
These batteries come in 1.5 volts

Carbon Zinc These cells and batteries only come in common form, but like the Nickel Cadmium cells, these cells are so outdated that they really should not be making or selling them anymore. & they are finally started to disappear. However, they do still have limited use in things like TV remotes & clocks. Even then though, you're better off putting alkalines in your remotes.

These batteries come in 1.5 volts.

TELLING THEM APART
~It's usually written on them or their packet what kind they are. The most common exceptions are alkaline and carbon zinc. Rechargeables usually have their abbreviation on them.
~The price. for example, the cheapest rechargeables are Nickel Cadmiums and the cheapest disposables are Carbon Zincs.
~Their use. The devices they are used in & whether that device has a charger. It should be noted that some devices that charge common batteries often support disposables. Look for a switch to turn the charging function on & off, if the device has a charger.
~Their voltage. 1.5 volts for Alkaline, Carbon Zinc and disposable Lithium. 1.2 volts for Nickel-Metal Hydride and Nickel Cadmium. 3 volts for rechargeable Lithium.

Some final notes on safety.

As I mentioned earlier, all kinds of batteries have the potential to leak acid or other toxic substances, emit toxic gas clouds, or explode and some care should be taken when handling them.

- Do not short out the contacts/connectors, this includes touching more than one connector at a time, & especially don't touch them with your tongue.
- Do not mix batteries. This includes chemical types, brands, fresh with used, or any other way you can think of to mix them together.
- Do not get them wet
- Do not charge disposable batteries
- Do not attempt to charge a battery with a charger designed for a different kind of battery.
- Do not impact a battery. Batteries never need a hammer.
- Do not expose a battery to extreme heat, like a fire or oven, or a microwave for that matter.
- Do not leave them in the sun.
- Do not attempt to open a battery.
- Do not leave them in an unused device for an extended period of time.
- Do not use them if they show any signs of leakage or changing shape.
- Do not dispose of them with general waste. Many electronics stores, recycling centres, and garbage dumps can arrange to have them recycled. They also contain toxic chemicals that are not good for the environment. These chemicals can kill people if they, for example, get into the drinking water when their containers/shells start to break down.

Questions?

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Old May 13th, 2010, 10:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Thanks for this!!

When i first received the fone, i only charged it till the LED goes green (so may be 4 hours) coz i couldn't wait to play wid it, will that affect the batter performance? =P
I had the fone for less than a week and i think my battery is going pretty quickly, is this normal???

Thanks!
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Old May 13th, 2010, 11:11 AM   #3 (permalink)
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no, it wont really affect anything that you only charged it for 4 hours the first time. Actually, considering that common wisdom suggests deep cycling the battery a few times when you first get it, then you've pretty much done the right thing.

This phone really is greedy with the battery. Frankly, HTC should have given it a bigger battery. So don't be surprised if you struggle to get just one day out of the battery.

I guess I should have mentioned things you can do to extend the battery life in my original post, but it pretty much comes down to turning things off that you're not using. For example, turn off the GPS if your not using it.

There are some included widgets that make it easy to do, and I downloaded one widget because it had better functionality.

included widgets that should be added to your desktop:
power control-does blutooth, wifi, GPS, auto-sync enable/disable of things like email, and brightness
Mobile data-turns mobile data (3g) on & off. found by selecting "settings>mobile network" in the add widget menu.

Extra app downloaded:
Brightness-downloaded from the market, called Brightness Level made by Curvefish. To make this work you must disable auto adjustment in the phone's settings. I found auto adjustment did not work very well. Found in "Settings>sound & display>brightness>automatic brightness" to toggle on/off.

Turn the brightness down to as dim as you can put up with. The screen will be harder to see in different lighting conditions, like sunlight, so the widget makes it easy to quickly adjust it.

Other things that help are to set the auto update for things like email & facebook to less frequently, or even manually. Active desktop backgrounds also have a small affect, so use a picture instead, but personally, I like the active desktops, so I've left mine on.

Finally, the phone charges faster with the AC adaptor than it does on a computer's USB port.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 12:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Great posts Uzetaab, thanks.

One question: can you explain a bit about what is going on with the battery improving in it's performance after the first 2 weeks or so? (if that actually is something that's happening.)
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Old May 13th, 2010, 03:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Frankly I can't, because I'm not convinced that any such thing occurs.

If it's true however, then I can only assume it's due to the way the chemicals interact with each other. To go into any further detail, we need know a bit about how batteries work, and this does go a bit beyond my experience.

Basically, lithium batteries still work the same way that the citrus fruit with some nails in it works. You have some metallic plates in a liquid and during the chemical reaction some sort of...I'll interrupt here to say that I don't know what, exactly starts to happen, but I assume..particle starts to transfer from one plate to the other. Electrons? atoms? something like that.

Due to newtons law, the reaction is having electricity (and some heat) produced. Of course the faster this recation occurs the more energy is produced, this is why the battery gets hot when your on the phone btw.

Anyway, I can only assume that if this deep cycling thing where the performance improves shortly after you start using it, is because the chemicals are evenly reacting across the plates now where they were a little uneven before.

Let me say again that this is just a guess though, because I'm not a scientist.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 04:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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It might also be due to not playing about with the phone as much after a couple of weeks!

;-p
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Old May 13th, 2010, 04:34 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Can this be sticky'd?
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Old May 14th, 2010, 01:38 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmarkj View Post
It might also be due to not playing about with the phone as much after a couple of weeks!

;-p
That, and trying to optimize everything after the initial disappointment in those first weeks

For me, nothing really improved from day one because I knew what would be draining battery and set everything up accordingly. One day of fairly heavy use is all I can get and after a month, I don't think it's going to get any better
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Old May 14th, 2010, 02:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
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wow. certainly worth a sticky

question from me, is it necessary to charge the battery for 12hrs (or more) the first time?
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Old May 14th, 2010, 03:44 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I doubt it , as long its charged then its all good.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 05:21 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmarkj View Post
It might also be due to not playing about with the phone as much after a couple of weeks!

;-p
I dunno why I didn't think of that this time, I have come to that same realisation before too. Come to think of it, I wrote that while I was having my morning coffee so I was still a bit sleepy I guess.

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wow. certainly worth a sticky

question from me, is it necessary to charge the battery for 12hrs (or more) the first time?
Quote:
Originally Posted by divaboy View Post
I doubt it , as long its charged then its all good.
I tend to agree with divaboy on this one. This particular battery management tip goes back to the bad old days of nickel cadmium & to a lesser extent nickel-metal hydride.

It relates to the memory effect, giving a battery a prolonged charge the first time, makes sure that the upper limit of the battery's capacity is reached. Since lithium batteries do not suffer from the memory effect, a prolonged first charge has little or no effect.

Having said that, I personally play it safe on this one & sit down with my new toy still plugged into the charger to play with it for the evening. Then I leave it on the charger overnight when I go to bed.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 05:29 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uzetaab View Post
I tend to agree with divaboy on this one. This particular battery management tip goes back to the bad old days of nickel cadmium & to a lesser extent nickel-metal hydride.

It relates to the memory effect, giving a battery a prolonged charge the first time, makes sure that the upper limit of the battery's capacity is reached. Since lithium batteries do not suffer from the memory effect, a prolonged first charge has little or no effect.

Having said that, I personally play it safe on this one & sit down with my new toy still plugged into the charger to play with it for the evening. Then I leave it on the charger overnight when I go to bed.


i just plug my phone in on at night just before I go to sleep , just a matter of habit ....
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Old May 14th, 2010, 07:47 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I'm getting something a little strange with my battery and overnight charging.

If put the phone into flight mode, leave it on overnight when I check in the morning it will say 100%. As I use it it will decrease normally as you'd expect.

But if I leave the phone 'on' (no flight mode) then it will say 100% in the morning, but after a little usage will jump right down to around 93% (that was the number this morning anyway).

If I plug it in to charge again then it will work it's way up again. However that's on AC, if I use the USB mode it will jump right up to 100% in a minute or so, but then after a few minutes use will jump down to ~93% again.

I'm getting a little suspicious about my battery. I've only been using it for 9 days now, but as uzetaab say above, it shouldn't change...
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Old May 14th, 2010, 08:24 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Jim, that does sound a little funky, but it might not be faulty. The thing about battery indicators is that they are not completely accurate, they are just an estimate. I can't give any personal experience from my desire because I'm only on my 3rd day, but before getting it, I used my ipod touch pretty heavily.

That device gives a battery low warning at 20% & a critical warning at 5 or 10%. While playing games on the device, those warnings were not always useful. Sometimes I would get the 20% warning twice, sometimes I would not get a warning at all & the device would just shut down.

More importantly to your problem, if after getting a 20% warning I stopped playing the game, it would continue to tell me that my battery was low for a while, then the battery warning would go away & it would go back into the green.

What that means is that it has done some new calculations based on my usage change & decided that the battery will last much longer now.

So it's possible that the device is trying to report on the amount of charge left, but does not yet have enough information to accurately indicate how much is left.

If you were to leave it on all night, then turn on aeroplane mode just before unplugging it, I suspect that it would not jump down to 83% so fast.

A note about aeroplane mode that I thought I would mention, when the phone is in aeroplane mode, all radio devices are turned off, including the phone calls one. No problem if you don't want to be desturbed, but if you want to leave just the phone on, use the widgets I suggested above.

Power control & mobile data.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 10:19 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I just had a thought about the battery life appearing to improve after a few recharge cycles. Apart from the whole not playing with the phone so much that is.

I suspect that it's not the battery that is improving but the battery life estimator that has gotten better because it has better data on how the battery performs.
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Old May 15th, 2010, 11:03 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimdriver2 View Post
I'm getting something a little strange with my battery and overnight charging.

If put the phone into flight mode, leave it on overnight when I check in the morning it will say 100%. As I use it it will decrease normally as you'd expect.

But if I leave the phone 'on' (no flight mode) then it will say 100% in the morning, but after a little usage will jump right down to around 93% (that was the number this morning anyway).

If I plug it in to charge again then it will work it's way up again. However that's on AC, if I use the USB mode it will jump right up to 100% in a minute or so, but then after a few minutes use will jump down to ~93% again.

I'm getting a little suspicious about my battery. I've only been using it for 9 days now, but as uzetaab say above, it shouldn't change...
The Desire doesnt seem to trickle charge. So on an overnight charge, it'll hit 100%, then turn off the charge circuit. It wont kick back in untill the phone is at 90% according to a post on this sudden drop issue on XDA developers.

For this very reason I charge mine when I get in, and take off charge at bed time. Come the morning, it's still at 97% with data and sync still left on.
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Old May 26th, 2010, 08:37 AM   #17 (permalink)
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whoa. my post has been stickied. I'm honoured. thanks
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Old May 26th, 2010, 11:40 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I need another explanations..

When we charge it.. does it important we charge until it full (HTC Desire lamp indicator turn into green) or we can take it off whenever we want. Didn't waiting battery full?
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Old May 26th, 2010, 02:04 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the explanation, much appreciated!
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Old May 27th, 2010, 03:10 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jimdriver2 View Post
Great posts Uzetaab, thanks.

One question: can you explain a bit about what is going on with the battery improving in it's performance after the first 2 weeks or so? (if that actually is something that's happening.)

Mine certainly seems to have improved - I put it down to a combination of having tweaked the phone services I actually need running all time (less drain in fiirst place) and the battery being regularly charged.
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Old May 27th, 2010, 04:54 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Burn In would be better because it describes the effect better, especially since most of us are probably familiar with this term with regards to display screens. In the case of batteries, it basically occurs when you repeatedly recharge a battery before it has completely discharged. Essentially if you recharge it at 50% all the time, the battery will burn 50% into it's "memory" and eventually will only work at 50% capacity all the time. there are ways to reverse this in a very limited way, but the results are usually not very good, and will only partially repair the damage, and the problem will re-occur.
So is the Desire at risk of this?
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Old May 27th, 2010, 05:00 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Sorry for this stupid question..

Is it better to charge the phone when its on or off? Does it make any difference at all?
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Old May 27th, 2010, 11:39 AM   #23 (permalink)
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I need another explanations..

When we charge it.. does it important we charge until it full (HTC Desire lamp indicator turn into green) or we can take it off whenever we want. Didn't waiting battery full?
Lithium batteries are much more forgiving than other batteries. They do not get damaged by partial charges, so go ahead and take it off the charger early if you need to. The only thing to avoid is draining it to zero.

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Thanks for all the explanation, much appreciated!
Your welcome

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Originally Posted by dancheesy View Post
So is the Desire at risk of this?
Not in the least. A battery will of course wear out through use and eventually need replacing, but they do not suffer from any memory effect. The battery you most likely have in your cordless phone does suffer from this though.

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Sorry for this stupid question..

Is it better to charge the phone when its on or off? Does it make any difference at all?
That's not a stupid question at all, in fact there is one advantage to charging it while the phone is off. Charging a phone while it is turned on is like trying to fill a bucket with a hole in it. Turning it off is like plugging the hole.

In terms off battery care though, it makes no difference.
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Old May 27th, 2010, 11:42 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Mine certainly seems to have improved - I put it down to a combination of having tweaked the phone services I actually need running all time (less drain in fiirst place) and the battery being regularly charged.
Yes, so has mine. I'm still of the opinion though, that:

1) The battery level indicator 'knows' the battery better.

2) I can successfully put my phone down & not play with it for more than 2 hours now!
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Old May 28th, 2010, 06:26 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by uzetaab View Post
Lithium batteries are much more forgiving than other batteries. They do not get damaged by partial charges, so go ahead and take it off the charger early if you need to. The only thing to avoid is draining it to zero.
Thanks for you nicely battery review, you has said that HTC Desire built in with Auto Shut Down when our battery in very low level.. my HTC Desire auto shutdown when my battery in very low level. My indicator become red and battery status in 4%

My question is.. does my current battery level when my HTC Desire shutdown is in draining it to zero condition?

Because after this happen, my battery become weak.. in full charge in standard usage I can play around with my HTC around 12 - 15 hours

Any solution to fix it?

Best Regards

Jauhari
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Old May 28th, 2010, 06:42 AM   #26 (permalink)
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I'm on day 7 and just a few short calls, a couple of e-mails, about 25 texts and an hour of surfing and the phone only lasts about 14 hours.


Not good, especially as I have to tell myself to leave it alone. My previous Nokia N82 would take a whole day of net use as well as calls and texts and if not charged at night, would still get me through most of the next day. That's on a 2 year old battery.

I just need my Desire to get from an early start till about 2 am, sometimes a typical working day for me, without me having to worry about usage.

Lord knows what it would be like if I used it's video and music capabilities. Best keep my iPod Touch then.
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Old May 29th, 2010, 01:45 AM   #27 (permalink)
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In the interest of consolidation, I thought it might be a good idea to list the best hints and tips aimed at getting the most battery life out of the phone. Specifically, customising settings and installing programs. I will probably need help with making this comprehensive, so if I've missed something, let me know.

Settings:

Signal Recievers:
Probably the single best way to increase battery life is to turn off receivers that you are not currently using. The phone includes home screen widgets that can be used to quickly toggle them on/off. More on which ones and how later. The antennas that can be turned off are as follows:

Aeroplane Mode
This is a setting that will simply turn off all antennas in one stroke. Most importantly, this includes turning off calling/texting ability, so you should only use this setting when you don't want anyone to be able to contact you through the phone in any way.

Menu button>settings>wireless & networks

Bluetooth
This is a setting that will turn off the ability to wirelessly connect to accessories. Things like hands free kits, wireless headphones, dedicated GPS devices, etc.

Menu button>settings>wireless & networks

GPS
This is the receiver that picks up signal from a satellite network. By measuring the time it takes the phone to send and receive a ping signal (like 2 computers saying "hello" to each other) to several satellites at once, it can calculate how far away it is from those satellites. This allows the phone to triangulate it's location. This is obviously useful for things like showing you where you are on a map, or telling you what the current local weather predictions are.

Menu button>settings>location

Mobile Data
This allows the phone to use the mobile network to get access to the internet at broadband speeds. Of course you need to be within range of a mobile tower capable of transmitting this data. aside from using up battery life, this data can be quite expensive, so there is more than one reason to turn it off when you are not using it.

Menu button>settings>wireless & networks>mobile networks

Wi-Fi
This receiver allows the phone to wirelessly connect to local computer networks. On a device such as the Desire, the primary reason to connect to these networks is to gain internet access through a cheaper and perhaps more reliable medium than the mobile data system.

Menu button>settings>wireless & networks

Screen Backlight:
This setting allows you to adjust how bright the screen is. The phone has a built in detector and automatic setting to adjust the brightness according to the environment. Personally, I find that the auto mode does not work well enough and I manually adjust my brightness with a widget app. More later
Menu button>settings>sound & display

Auto Sync

Automatic Syncing of data for various apps on the phone. Things like email, face book, weather, calendars, etc. The frequency of the updates can be adjusted and the less often they update, the more battery power you save. This setting has a widget, more later.

Menu button>settings>accounts & sync
Also, the various syncing apps usually have settings that you access by pressing the menu button from within the app.

Widgets:
(I'm going to assume you still have Sense UI for this section. If you do not have Sense UI, you should be able to translate it to whatever rom you flashed your phone too.)

There are several widgets that you can use to either keep you informed about your phone's status or allow you to quickly change settings. Most of the widgets you need are already included with the Sense UI, but there are some that you can download from the market.

The Widgets that I suggest you add are:
GPS
Bluetooth
Wi-Fi
Mobile Data
Brightness
Level*
Manual Sync**
Battery time lite***

*Market download by Motalen
**Only really useful if you have set your sync settings to manual or infrequent
***Market download by Curvefish

To add widgets to your phone, from the home screen:

+>widget>Power control

This is an all in one widget that includes:
Wi-Fi
Bluetooth
GPS
Manual Sync
Brightness


+>widget>Settings>~
These are individual widgets for:
Airplane mode
Bluetooth
GPS
Mobile Data
Wi-Fi

Market Download Apps & widgets:

Battery Time lite:
by Curvefish
this app has a widget that has a percentage number for battery remaining.
It also adds a percentage to the status bar.
When loaded, the app will tell you how long you can perform various functions, like make calls or use the internet. Unfortunately, those figures are only a guide because the times are preset & can not be adjusted for if your battery performs a little better or worse than the average. (If anyone knows of an app that records battery histories and automatically adjusts the times, I'd love to know about it).

Spare Parts:
By Android Apps
This app allows you to tweak a few things to increase battery life, like turning off some animations which consume more power. It also logs a lot usage history that can be useful.

It's best function is that it can list apps that put the phone into 'partial wake mode' which can drain a lot of battery.

Launch app>battery history>first drop down menu> partial wake useage

If it lists any apps that have very high usage, you might want to consider removing that app. Note that if you, for example, listen to a lot of music, then the usage for the music app will show very high. Not much you can do about this other than stop listening to music.

*note* there is a bug that some people experience where Calendar is listed with a very high partial wake, for a possible solution to this problem, try this thread:
-link-

Brightness Level:
by Motalen
This useful little app allows you to quickly adjust the brightness of the display if you have the auto brightness turned off.

Task Killer Apps:
There is an ongoing debate about whether this sort of program is needed. Android does a very good job at managing running apps to conserve battery life, but there may some advantage to it with certain apps. It should also be pointed out that the task killer app uses battery power to track which apps are running. It might be best to tell the task killer to kill itself & only launch it when you want to stop apps.
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Old May 29th, 2010, 02:02 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Thanks for you nicely battery review, you has said that HTC Desire built in with Auto Shut Down when our battery in very low level.. my HTC Desire auto shutdown when my battery in very low level. My indicator become red and battery status in 4%

My question is.. does my current battery level when my HTC Desire shutdown is in draining it to zero condition?

Because after this happen, my battery become weak.. in full charge in standard usage I can play around with my HTC around 12 - 15 hours

Any solution to fix it?

Best Regards
Jauhari
I'm not sure I understand the question. If your phone has shut itself down because the battery was almost dead, then you should have been ok as long as you didn't keep trying to turn it back on. And you started charging it within a day or 2 of it turning off.

If your battery life has gotten shorter, then try the partial wake usage in the spare parts app. Maybe something is draining it?
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Old May 29th, 2010, 02:56 AM   #29 (permalink)
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does the phone have trickle charge? i personally believe it does not .. ie i put my phone on charge night time . unpleg in the morning and it does not take long to reach 94 %! but when i plug it in again to recharge that 6% it lasts for a long time!
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Old May 29th, 2010, 11:20 AM   #30 (permalink)
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I'm not sure I understand the question. If your phone has shut itself down because the battery was almost dead, then you should have been ok as long as you didn't keep trying to turn it back on. And you started charging it within a day or 2 of it turning off.

If your battery life has gotten shorter, then try the partial wake usage in the spare parts app. Maybe something is draining it?
How to analyze which spare parts app that draining my battery?
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Old May 30th, 2010, 05:06 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Does anyone use the Proporta USB Turbo Charger?
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Old June 1st, 2010, 06:20 AM   #32 (permalink)
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I have almost everything switched on on my Desire (no gps or bluetooth) and widgets for freinds, sky news etc on the home pages.

My battery seems to last no longer than 8-9 hours like this? Does that sound about right?

I've had the phone a while now - well over a month
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Old June 1st, 2010, 01:48 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Default First time charging

Hi guys!! i just got my desire today. Battery at the moment is half bar, am i suppose to charge it for 8 hours? or should i just wait for the battery life to reach 10% then i'll charge. Need some advice..
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Old June 1st, 2010, 05:37 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Hi guys!! i just got my desire today. Battery at the moment is half bar, am i suppose to charge it for 8 hours? or should i just wait for the battery life to reach 10% then i'll charge. Need some advice..
For me, the best idea is charge it before 15%
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Old June 2nd, 2010, 09:49 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by jauhari View Post
How to analyze which spare parts app that draining my battery?
The app you use is called Spare Parts

Quote:
Originally Posted by TH1882FC View Post
I have almost everything switched on on my Desire (no gps or bluetooth) and widgets for freinds, sky news etc on the home pages.

My battery seems to last no longer than 8-9 hours like this? Does that sound about right?

I've had the phone a while now - well over a month
I've heard that the sky app doesn't let the phone sleep. try removing it for a day & see if it's any better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by scooby_r View Post
Hi guys!! i just got my desire today. Battery at the moment is half bar, am i suppose to charge it for 8 hours? or should i just wait for the battery life to reach 10% then i'll charge. Need some advice..
preferably longer. you can't overcharge it.
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Old June 3rd, 2010, 08:51 AM   #36 (permalink)
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What about the new 3rd-party batteries, are they any good?
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Old June 3rd, 2010, 09:36 AM   #37 (permalink)
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What about the new 3rd-party batteries, are they any good?
That's a good question. I won't go into a lot of detail here, because there is another stickied thread that talks about this a lot.

http://androidforums.com/htc-desire/66987-seidio-1600mah-extended-life-battery.html#post608475

Personally, I am thinking about just buying another original battery & keeping it in my car or something. maybe switch them once a month so that it doesn't discharge from lack of use.

The option that most people seem to like best is one of those little battery boxes that you plug in like a charger, but that means carrying around an extra piece of hardware.

The last good option is the extended battery that has a new phone back plate (the one mentioned in the other post), that apparently is a good battery if you don't mind a bigger phone.

As for "are they any good?" I have not made my mind up about that yet. The sample size in the article that thread talks about is woefully inadequate. It's not 15 kinds of batteries that have been tested, it's just 15 batteries. For that test to convince me, it would have to be something like 10 kinds at 20 batteries each.

Having said that, it's made me doubtful enough that I wouldn't bother trying to get a better battery, maybe a cheaper one though.

Having batteries vary in their output is not so surprising really. They rely on a chemical reaction to produce the energy which is represented as electricity in this case (other energies produced can result in heat or light). Chemical reactions are of course inherently unstable, that's why most fireworks makers are missing fingers due to them exploding in their hands. So, the results of these batteries are always going to vary.
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Old June 6th, 2010, 12:06 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Hey, great thread.

A few clarifications though..
- You mentioned that it's better to leave the phone plugged. Does this mean that it would help to plug it any practical time that there's a socket regardless of battery levels? Does this also mean that leaving it plugged long after it is fully charged is actually healthy for the batter?
- Why is deep charging not good for battery life?
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Old June 6th, 2010, 04:02 AM   #39 (permalink)
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I think there is another thread that discusses different USB charge sources (car chargers and typs of lead). Anyway, I went on a 2 hour drive yesterday using Google Maps navigation and the phone initially charged normally via a dedicated cigar lighter to MicroUSB car charger I have. However, I suspect heat started to have a detrimental effect on the charging process and the charge indicator light started to flash. It was pretty hot in the car (aircon not working at the moment) with lots direct sunlight onto the phone. So the phone was actually discharging during the second half of the journey. does anyone have any advice on this?

Ian
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Old June 7th, 2010, 03:34 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Hey, great thread.

A few clarifications though..
- You mentioned that it's better to leave the phone plugged. Does this mean that it would help to plug it any practical time that there's a socket regardless of battery levels? Does this also mean that leaving it plugged long after it is fully charged is actually healthy for the batter?
- Why is deep charging not good for battery life?
For the first questions, basically, yes.

For the last question, it probably doesn't do any damage. I can make a gues why, but I'm not really sure why completely draining the battery is bad. My guess is that damage Is done to the metal plates when the battery continues to try to do it's reaction thing.

Therefore, I guess, when the battery gets low there is a chance that some damage to the plates will occur.

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I think there is another thread that discusses different USB charge sources (car chargers and typs of lead). Anyway, I went on a 2 hour drive yesterday using Google Maps navigation and the phone initially charged normally via a dedicated cigar lighter to MicroUSB car charger I have. However, I suspect heat started to have a detrimental effect on the charging process and the charge indicator light started to flash. It was pretty hot in the car (aircon not working at the moment) with lots direct sunlight onto the phone. So the phone was actually discharging during the second half of the journey. does anyone have any advice on this?

Ian
As I understand it, there are two different ways that the cable can be wired up. One provides more charging voltage than the other. Many people seem to be getting car chargers of the weaker kind. I suspect that your battery was discharging faster than It was charging the whole time, but you never noticed. A charger rated at 1A or 1000mah should solve that problem, if you can trust the rating.

As for the heat Issue, batteries can handle quite a bit of heat, but working the battery so hard while it's in such a hot environment is probwbpy not good for It. If you look at the battery, it has a temp range on It. Think it's 65 degrees celcius. I doubt the battery Is getting that hot, as long as you don't leave it In a parked car In the hot sun.

Heh. The desire's silly auto correct keeps putting capital "l" everywhere.
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Old June 7th, 2010, 06:45 AM   #41 (permalink)
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What "battery boxes" (external batteries to charge the internal one) would you recommend for the HTC Desire?
Thanks!
Bart
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Old June 7th, 2010, 07:20 AM   #42 (permalink)
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Had my Desire 2-3 weeks. Originally lasting less than 20 hours before needing to charge it. Now it lasts approx 36 hours.

I've turned off stuff I don't need(though I would have more on once I can get the battery to last longer), using a photo of my daughter as the background, up to 100 texts a day, around 50 emails a day, wifi 1 hour at home, read ebook 30 mins. Plus the normal flicking between screens and checking the battery/time couple of times an hour.

I'm deep charging it and all in all I'm happy the way its improving.
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Old June 7th, 2010, 07:52 AM   #43 (permalink)
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Apologies if this resource has already been mentioned or if referring to another forum breaks house rules but info is info..hence...should you want a wealth of info on batteries in general, how they work, charging cycles, tests etc etc you could do little better than checking out candlepowerforums, in particular this thread:

Flashlight Electronics - Batteries Included - Threads of Interest - CandlePowerForums

links to a whole host of information to satisfy any geeky appetite for this stuff.

If you do a search on there for any information pertaining to anything regarding charging cycles and the like you'll find enough info to keep you going for weeks.

I'd summarise some of the salient points relating to the Desire's battery type in a more technical depth and try and clear up some confusion but haven't the time at the moment. Will maybe try later in the week if anyone is interested.

Hope the above is of some use.
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Old June 7th, 2010, 08:06 AM   #44 (permalink)
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What "battery boxes" (external batteries to charge the internal one) would you recommend for the HTC Desire?
Thanks!
Bart
If you look in the Seidio 1600mAh extended life battery topic, there are a few alternatives to using that battery, such as 'battery boxes'

i have done a review on the pebble in there and that seems an excellent device there is also one called the proporta 3400 which lekky has and recommends
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Old June 7th, 2010, 09:41 AM   #45 (permalink)
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When we charging our HTC Desire... can we pull off our charger before our battery FULL charged? or we can pull off the charger whatever we want?

What advantages/disadvantages when we pull off before full charger?
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Old June 8th, 2010, 05:03 PM   #46 (permalink)
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Question: Does shaking a close to discharged battery (diposal or specialized) increase slightly the 'juice' you can get out of it? You know, classical TV remote which you shake when obviously the battery is close to dead (it seems to work, but perhaps it's humbug)
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Old June 9th, 2010, 07:41 AM   #47 (permalink)
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I've done some further research on lithium rechargeable batteries & learned a few more things. The first one answers this question:

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Originally Posted by jauhari View Post
When we charging our HTC Desire... can we pull off our charger before our battery FULL charged? or we can pull off the charger whatever we want?

What advantages/disadvantages when we pull off before full charger?
No permanent harm will be done to the battery by taking it off the charger early, however, you may find that the battery seems to discharge faster than usual. The reason is that something like the first 80% of a battery charges & discharges quite rapidly, the the closer the battery gets to 100%, the slower the battery will discharge. Going from 100% to 80% probably takes about the same ammount of time as going from 80% to 5%.

Having said that, the battery meter in the phone should be smart enough to compensate for this curve, but I don't know whether it does. Question:

Does the phone's charge capacity meter appear to get faster as the phone discharges?

I haven't noticed, but if it does, then it's just measuring the raw energy. If it does not appear to get faster, then it's compensating for the fact that the battery discharge speeds up as it loses stored energy.

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Pick me, pick me!!
Question: Does shaking a close to discharged battery (diposal or specialized) increase slightly the 'juice' you can get out of it? You know, classical TV remote which you shake when obviously the battery is close to dead (it seems to work, but perhaps it's humbug)
Well, considering that batteries have a liquid component, then there is probably a minor effect that results in getting the last of the energy out of a battery, but I doubt it works for rechargeable lithiums. I would not recommend it for a lithium battery anyway because you do not want to let a lithium battery get flat.

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Originally Posted by flapper View Post
Apologies if this resource has already been mentioned or if referring to another forum breaks house rules but info is info..hence...should you want a wealth of info on batteries in general, how they work, charging cycles, tests etc etc you could do little better than checking out candlepowerforums, in particular this thread:

Flashlight Electronics - Batteries Included - Threads of Interest - CandlePowerForums

links to a whole host of information to satisfy any geeky appetite for this stuff.

If you do a search on there for any information pertaining to anything regarding charging cycles and the like you'll find enough info to keep you going for weeks.

I'd summarise some of the salient points relating to the Desire's battery type in a more technical depth and try and clear up some confusion but haven't the time at the moment. Will maybe try later in the week if anyone is interested.

Hope the above is of some use.
Thanks for the link, but I didn't find much useful information there because most of that info deals with nicad & nimh batteries. It was too difficult to find much of use without reading everything. However, I did find a website that has lots of useful & well organised information.

Welcome to Battery University

I have more to write, but my PC is playing up, so I'm going to restart it.
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Old June 9th, 2010, 09:29 AM   #48 (permalink)
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I just made some important changes to the original post, so if you have read it previously, please look at it again.

Aside from that, I have discovered an explanation for why these phones hold their charge longer if the phone is removed from the charger and put back on again.

Essentially, the phone is being overcharged. This will indeed result in the battery holding their charge longer, but there is a trade off. You are shortening the life of the battery and will need to replace it sooner.

To explain, I first need to explain that these batteries when charged have about 4.2 volts. All batteries behave this way, a fully charged disposable AA/UM3 battery is about 1.8 volts, it can be considered flat at about 1 volt or less. When battery voltage is referred to, they use the average voltage.

Ok, so the phone's battery works best if charged to about 4.2 volts. The amount of permanent decay that results in the battery needing replacement occurs at a fairly regular rate for this voltage.

If you charge the battery to 4.3 volts, the battery will of course discharge at a slower rate because the higher the voltage, the slower the battery will drain. The number of charges you get long term will be drastically lower though.

When you charge the battery & it detects a full charge, it stops charging, these batteries can not be trickle charged. What the charger does instead is turn on & off at regular intervals to maintain the charge. You can fool the charger into doing a normal charge again by removing then reapplying it, but this will result in an overcharged battery. Frankly, this should not be possible so HTC should fix this. It seems to me that this phone has some serious issues with both it's charging and discharging. I don't know whether it's hardware or software related, but HTC should do something about it. Even the instructions for maintaining the battery are wrong.
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Old June 14th, 2010, 12:18 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Hi - for the first ever charge is it best to charge it for the full 4 hours without using the phone or can you have a play and set it up etc whilst it's on its first charge?

TIA
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Old June 22nd, 2010, 09:40 AM   #50 (permalink)
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Arrow Thanks to all for the advice and the tips.

Just got a new htc Desire and this thread helped a lot :-)

After reading the thread I went for a stand charger plus a spare battery, it looks good and its cheap at 18 ( Cradle Charger + 2nd battery charging slot). It fits perfectly.

(There is a bright blue LED at the front but I covered it).

I'm still waiting for the battery though :-(

Cheers.



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