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Tips for using smartphone in cold weather

Tips for using smartphone in cold weather Illustrative photo (Photo: Freepik)
Author: Daria Shekina

Winter is a challenging time of year, and its severity is felt not only by people but also by the devices they use, including smartphones. Many users have encountered the issue of rapid battery drainage in extremely cold weather, reports the media company News Center Maine.

Modern smartphones have vulnerable components, and the battery is among them. Most devices are equipped with lithium-ion (Li-ion) or lithium-polymer (Li-Po) batteries, which can quickly freeze. In frosty conditions, the battery doesn't lose its charge but becomes inefficient at transmitting energy rapidly.

Another factor impacting the battery's performance is the smartphone's casing material. The material and thickness of the casing determine how quickly the battery freezes in the cold. For instance, a thin aluminum casing accelerates the freezing process due to the metal's high thermal conductivity.

Conversely, budget plastic slows down the battery's cooling. Glass has average thermal conductivity, but in most cases, smartphones with glass casings are complemented by aluminum inserts.

How to avoid battery overcooling:

Keep your smartphone dry inside and out.

During heavy snowfall, limit smartphone usage to avoid excess moisture exposure. Note that abrupt temperature changes outside and inside may cause condensation, damaging even moisture-resistant devices. It could seep inside the device's circuitry or accumulate on speakers, among other parts.

Use battery optimization apps

To monitor any changes in the current capacity and anticipated wear of the battery in freezing conditions, you can install any app you prefer on your smartphone designed for this purpose. With such apps, you can always track how long the gadget can work depending on the established mode.

Carry your smartphone in a case or inner pocket

Another effective solution is carrying your smartphone in a case or the inner pocket of your outer clothing. Tight-fitting cases slow down the heat exchange between the smartphone and the cold air outside.

It's important to note that the regular temperature of a smartphone battery in standby mode is approximately 20-30 degrees Celsius. In cold weather, the main task is to maintain a similar device temperature for as long as possible. The less the gadget is exposed to the cold, the longer the battery will retain its capacity.

Use a headset

If you have to talk a lot during a winter walk or handle important calls outside in the cold, it's recommended to use a headset. This allows you to communicate comfortably and address work matters without exposing the gadget to the risk of overcooling.

You can choose either wired or wireless headsets, but remember that wireless earphones may disconnect at inappropriate times.

Earlier, we also discussed whether it's necessary to keep the power-saving mode on your smartphone permanently enabled.