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Qualcomm 5G PowerSave promises 4G battery life on 5G phones

Qualcomm's power-saving functionality might prevent disastrously reduced battery life on 5G smartphones.

Published onFebruary 25, 2019

Qualcomm 5G PowerSave at MWC 2019.

One of the biggest concerns regarding 5G is the impact on battery life, as companies use first-generation modems to get smartphones to market. Qualcomm reckons it has the solution, however, called 5G PowerSave.

The chipmaker says 5G PowerSave is a combination of 3GPP standard features (connected mode and discontinuous reception), as well as “a number of unique techniques and capabilities.” In fact, the firm says you can expect all-day battery life that’s comparable to today’s Gigabit LTE smartphones.

Qualcomm president Cristiano Amon was tight-lipped when it came to exact details on the claimed “unique” capabilities but noted that it was taking a system-level approach to power-efficiency.

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 chip in hand

Qualcomm 5G PowerSave is supported by all smartphones using the Snapdragon 855/X50 5G modem pairing, and it will also be supported on devices using the brand-new X55 5G modem. Furthermore, Qualcomm confirmed a question that manufacturers don’t have to jump through hoops to gain support for the functionality.

“It’s part of our release of the platform, [OEMs] don’t have to do anything,” confirmed Cristiano Amon, in response to a question from Android Authority.

Amon also asserted that consumers can expect major efficiency improvements when comparing devices with 5G PowerSave and devices without the feature. “If you have an opportunity to measure some of the launches that are going to happen without the capability and the launches with the capability, you’ll see deltas way north of 30 percent or more.”

NEXT: Samsung Galaxy A30 and A50 turn up the heat, make Super AMOLED affordable

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