Posted by: Frank | May 16, 2009

Waiting For Cupcake

As a T-Mobile G1 owner, I am anxiously waiting for the Cupcake (version 1.5) update of the Google Android operating system. From what I read, it appears most folks are anxious for the new features that Cupcake adds, like an on-screen keyboard so that you don’t have always slide out the physical keyboard, and the ability to record video. Those are nice enough features, but what I am most interested in is seeing how much battery life improves with the new version of the operating system.

By far the biggest limitation of the G1 is the battery life, which simply cannot make it through a day on the battery that comes with the G1. You can increase the battery life with a larger battery, but I found the impacts on size and weight were even a greater negative then having to remember to “top-off” the G1 during the day. Device manufacturers can increase battery life by adding bigger batteries, but it’s a delecate line to walk to not affect the mobile aspects of the device. The true path to increasing battery life is through software and hardware, and in the case of Android, I think there are many opportunities for improvement that could lead to longer battery life. I think the operating system and software applications are too chatty on the network, which has got to be a big battery drain.

The bottom line is that as long as the largest complaint about an Android phone is that battery life sucks, Android will not gain significant consumer market share. True, T-Mobile reports they have sold more than a million G1s, but while that is impressive, I think that number is largely to geeks like me and a million units is a small fraction of the total mobile phone market.



  1. […] my T-Mobile G1 downloaded and installed the Cupcake update to Android, which is the update that I wrote about earlier in the month. I will need more time to discover all of the new things that Cupcake […]

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