The Reason Why Apple Uses Integrated Battery Designs

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the Tom's Hardware community: where nearly two million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.
Status
Not open for further replies.

razor512

Distinguished
Jun 16, 2007
2,051
7
19,815
15
in a publicly available document, apple wont list their true goals

they wont outright say

Out patented internal non user replaceable battery design will improve profit margins as users with failing batteries will either be encouraged to purchase newer models from us, or pay us $100 to have the failing internal battery replaced.

many people who went out to get a iphone or ipod touch, when questioned, never made the connection that li-ion batteries don't last forever. (some of the students at my college didn't even realize that it even had a battery)

trust me, apple is banking on people not considering or even thinking about the battery. (Kinda like how some people outright buy instead of leasing a hybrid car with out considering that in a few years, they may have to replace that $10,000 li-ion battery pack)
 
[citation][nom]smits[/nom]Obviously most of the posters here aren't (good) engineers. What's the most common thing to happen when someone drops their cell phone or calculator -- the battery pops out. By not having that removable battery cover, Apple has created a more durable product. Furthermore, several 3rd party vendors sell portable chargers and extended battery life cases for the iPhone. So the lack of a removable battery is really a non-issue for those of us with a strong technical background who appreciate excellent engineering.[/citation]

My phones battery doesn't pop out if I drop it... if it ever did I suppose I would take the 5 seconds to put it back in. I am really not getting the bits about good engineering and dropping as it applies to apple though... if you drop an iPhone it shatters. the battery popping out is the least of your worries...
 

azz156

Distinguished
Jun 21, 2009
127
0
18,680
0
i think apple is talking out of their ass when they say theres protective structures around the battery, when i replaced the battery in my old 3gs all there was was a bit of glue holding the battery to the plastic back cover
 

JimmiG

Distinguished
Nov 21, 2008
268
0
18,780
0
It's a trade-off that just isn't necessary. If you need proof, just look at the hundreds of different WP7 and Android devices from other manufacturers that manage to be lightweight and look sleek while packing just as much (or more) battery capacity.
 

Killingmaster

Distinguished
Dec 19, 2010
16
0
18,520
1
Apple is not creative(enough) anymore for the high prices... So doesn't 'smart' buyers buy anymore.

And the battery is (was)never a problem for me because I charge everyday at night.
 

Vladislaus

Distinguished
Jul 29, 2010
1,290
0
19,280
0
[citation][nom]smits[/nom]Obviously most of the posters here aren't (good) engineers. What's the most common thing to happen when someone drops their cell phone or calculator -- the battery pops out. By not having that removable battery cover, Apple has created a more durable product. Furthermore, several 3rd party vendors sell portable chargers and extended battery life cases for the iPhone. So the lack of a removable battery is really a non-issue for those of us with a strong technical background who appreciate excellent engineering.[/citation]
Usually when a phone drops the most fragile point is the LCD, specially with today's smart-phones that have a big screen. The battery is not the weak spot.

If you want a durable product then the best thing is a normal phone. They can take a hell of a beating and still work. I remember my old Nokia that fell from a 4 story high balcony to the street. Even though the phone dismantled itself during the impact, all that was needed of me was to attach the covers and the battery and the phone worked perfectly for quite a few more years with just a few small scratches.
 

rantoc

Distinguished
Dec 17, 2009
1,859
0
19,780
0
[citation][nom]smits[/nom]Obviously most of the posters here aren't (good) engineers. What's the most common thing to happen when someone drops their cell phone or calculator -- the battery pops out. By not having that removable battery cover, Apple has created a more durable product. Furthermore, several 3rd party vendors sell portable chargers and extended battery life cases for the iPhone. So the lack of a removable battery is really a non-issue for those of us with a strong technical background who appreciate excellent engineering.[/citation]

There are several good ways secure the battery in place and make it replaceable, but a descent locking mechanism costs and i guess Apple don't want to spend a dime more than they have to on their products - Forcing their customers to get screwed if they do need to change the battery due to heavy usage. Thats what this is all about, if you defend Apple it only serves to prove you like the idea of a nothing repairable and everything should be disposed after use and sent to China like most electronic waste nowadays. (look it up, its nasty to see what effect it has on the children and people while the companies are to busy calculating their profit). Hope you get the next truck dumped in your apartment and see how you feel when part of that most likely could have been usable if it were repairable.

Good engineering mr."engineer" means parts can be exchangeable AND durable, the only downside of that is that it costs a tad more to produce and in todays world of capitalism the environment pays the price as well as the future generations of humans that have to live in it!
 
G

Guest

Guest
I had dinner with one of Apple's battery engineers a couple years ago, and the reasons behind their integrated battery designs, based on what he told me, are very simple:
- the battery typically lasts longer than the device's useful life
- a very small percentage of people who buy devices with removable batteries, actually buy a 2nd battery that they swap out regularly (most device users simply charge their one battery regularly)
- a removable battery's plastic casing and corresponding interface in the device itself take up an enormous amount of space that can be better utilized by adding more cells & thus extending battery life, or by allowing them to produce a thinner device
- the integrated battery can be placed anywhere inside the device, so they don't have to make design sacrifices based on the placement of a removable battery

I have personally owned every iPhone (2G, 3G, 3GS, 4 and now the 4S) and have never had to replace a battery, so for me this logic has held true. For those few days where I'm going to be using my phone the entire day (tweeting from a conference that spans the whole work day, for instance) I use an external battery from Mophie to provide the extra power boost.
 

razor512

Distinguished
Jun 16, 2007
2,051
7
19,815
15
The reason why the screens break so easily now is in order to make phones smaller, they have gotten rid of the buffer zones around the screens so if it is dropped, the force of the impact is transferred directly to the screen.

Older smartphones, eg the older pocket pc based ones running windows mobile, did not have this issue because on the inside of them. the thick boarders around the screens were literally empty space.

eg in the pics below, the screen is slightly bigger than the circuit board, but there is a large boarder around the screen. (in all directions there is empty space)

while this makes the device larger than needed for it to function, it also prevents most drops from damaging the screen. (PS there is also padding around the screen as well as under the screen allowing for the entire unit to flex with out flexing the screen)

http://i.imgur.com/7r8a0.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/LjXv1.jpg

since people are looking for the phone that provides a good sized screen and the features they want at the smallest size possible, the buffer zones are the first to go
 
G

Guest

Guest
OK I will play devils advocate with Apple and their battery designs. My feeling is why have other companies not tried this? Probably because your eliminating the ability for a user to replace a battery themselves or have a additional battery for backup. Of course Apple claims probably that their batteries in their devices last long enough to negate this problem. But I also have another issue with Apple on their battery designed to not be serviceable. Are they as durable? Or will they simply require more frequent replacement and will that cause many to just buy a new computer, phone or other device?
 

razor512

Distinguished
Jun 16, 2007
2,051
7
19,815
15
apple batteries are not more durable, and the lasting longer than their useful life only applies to people who buy into the apple lifestyle of buying the latest iphone when ever it comes out (which is very frequently)

For other people who buy based on functions and may want to keep their phone for 5+ years, then the iphone internal battery becomes a major issue. On average the li-ion battery may last around 2 years before it no longer offers enough battery life to suit the average users needs. If new, the phone lasted about a day, then when the battery has degraded, you find your self having to more frequently recharge because the phone cant get you through the day on a single charge, then it is no longer as useful as when you first got it.

While there are external battery packs, they add unnecessary bulk compared to taking a normal smartphone and an extended battery and simply using a special back cover that only adds enough thickness to house the battery and not the extra circuitry and also the lossy process that comes with electronics not being 100% efficient.



By having a user replaceable battery, you allow users to have more than 1 battery. You allow them to install higher capacity batteries, or better quality batteries that may offer better capacity while using the same amount of space.

(PS for my smartphone a new 1500 mAh battery cost $9)
 

sonofliberty08

Distinguished
Mar 17, 2009
658
0
18,980
0
[citation][nom]jeff77789[/nom]What if that car was a Prius? (the big battery i mean)If the big battery in a Prius was easily removable, think of the rest of the car and it's design.[/citation]
the iphone battery are as simple as other cell phone batteries, just like the small battery in the car, and it is worse, it will explode in your pants any where any time, not like the big battery in the hybrid car u mentioned......
 

noobzilla771

Distinguished
Jul 28, 2011
78
0
18,640
1
So many Apple haters who call everyone with an objective review supporting Apple products an Apple fanboy or give thumbs down trollolol

Having replaceable batteries do have some advantages because, despite the availability of plugs almost everywhere, there could be critical times when there isnt one ie traveling, camping, outdoor activities, etc. For people always on the go, then yes it's a must. But really that's only a small % of most people's activities. Besides, devices with "non-replaceable batteries" tend to last longer, thus giving the user more time to find an outlet. I have owned both Apple and non-Apple products like laptops, phones, and music players. I find myself preferring to charge less than carry extra batteries.

I can write a whole essay on this but really it all boils down to "its all personal preference."

On a side note, I'm using an iPhone 4 and it seems fairly easy/cheap to replace the battery.
http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/iPhone-4-Teardown/3130/1
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=oem+battery+for+iphone+4&_sacat=0&_odkw=battery+for+iphone+4&_osacat=0&_trksid=p3286.c0.m270.l1313
 

thrasher32

Distinguished
Sep 17, 2007
375
0
18,790
1
Wow. Just WOW. For Apple to even attempt to justify making the battery non-user-servicable is the pinnacle of ignorant comedy.

Hahahah Apple is the G.O.P. (Republican) party of the tech world LMAO
 

thrasher32

Distinguished
Sep 17, 2007
375
0
18,790
1
[citation][nom]sonofliberty08[/nom]the iphone battery are as simple as other cell phone batteries, just like the small battery in the car, and it is worse, it will explode in your pants any where any time, not like the big battery in the hybrid car u mentioned......[/citation]

You're seriously comparing the battery in a Hybrid Auto to the battery in an iPhone? Gee what if they made all cars so the user could just swap out the engine whenever they like?
 

razor512

Distinguished
Jun 16, 2007
2,051
7
19,815
15
cars are designed for the engine to be removable. the design of the engine is just in such a way that makes it a full weekend job to remove the engine and another full weekend to put it back in. 9while a mechanic can do it faster, for the average user, it is a very long process
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

ASK THE COMMUNITY