Electric car tech could help make Samsung phone batteries more efficient

Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus
(Image credit: Future)

While Samsung phones don't have terrible battery lives, they don't have great ones either - in our reviews of the Galaxy S22, S22 Plus and S22 Ultra, the company's three latest flagships, we mentioned that the battery lasted a day but generally not more.

That might change soon though. One of the many arms of the company is Samsung SDI, which makes batteries for many things including electric vehicles - and according to Korean news site The Elec, some of the battery tech Samsung SDI has developed could make its way to smartphones.

Currently, battery makers use a certain technique to roll the batteries into a small space, and make them as small as possible, but for electric vehicles, Samsung has worked on a technique that is even more efficient for space, which is a form of 'stacking'. And apparently, it's looking to use this on a smaller scale for smartphones.

As a bit of a metaphor - rolling is like folding your clothes to fit them in a suitcase better, and stacking is like employing the ranger roll technique to pack the clothes into a much smaller space.

According to The Elec, this new technique will increase energy density by 10% - so a phone that currently takes a 3,000mAh battery would, without changing size, now be able to take a 3,300mAh one.

There's no clear timetable on when we'll see Samsung employ this change on its smartphones, but we imagine the company will want to go through rounds of tests before using it. So don't expect it on the Samsung Galaxy S23

Analysis: a lovely bit of cohesion - if the price is right

It's smart of Samsung to share its tech developments between its different arms - as long as it works for the customer.

Electric cars are expensive vehicles. Sure, the price is going down all the time, but in 2022 the tech still costs quite a bit to purchase. And if that's true of the vehicles themselves, it's likely true of the tech within - like batteries. 

So a future Galaxy phone should only use this tech if it doesn't bump up the cost of the mobile too much. Samsung's S-series of devices are already pricey enough without expensive jelly-roll batteries bumping up the price any more.

Battery life is an important factor of any mobile purchase, and generally speaking, lower-cost phones last longer - which can be a big thing that discourages people from buying pricier devices. So Samsung will need a big battery without a high price tag to win over more buyers.

Tom Bedford

Tom Bedford was deputy phones editor on TechRadar until late 2022, having worked his way up from staff writer. Though he specialized in phones and tablets, he also took on other tech like electric scooters, smartwatches, fitness, mobile gaming and more. He is based in London, UK and now works for the entertainment site What To Watch.

He graduated in American Literature and Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. Prior to working on TechRadar, he freelanced in tech, gaming and entertainment, and also spent many years working as a mixologist.