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Samsung Galaxy S7 battery life

We’ve been though it a lot – the Samsung Galaxy S5, as all Galaxy S’s before it, had a user-replaceable battery, and the S6 didn’t, which sucks. Not only that, it actually had a smaller battery than the model it replaced.

The first part of that story doesn’t seem likely to change, as design constraints have been forcing manufacturers to seal batteries inside devices, not just smartphones. Well, good thing then, that Samsung actually fitted a higher capacity power pack inside the Galaxy S7 than it did in the S6. It is, in fact, the most juice a vanilla Galaxy S-series model has had – specialty editions like the S6 active and S6 edge+ don’t count.

The Galaxy S7 has a 3,000mAh battery, which is the most that 5-inch (or thereabout) smartphones have these days, matched by the latest Xiaomi Mi 5. The current, and likely last of its kind, Sony Xperia Z5 packs 2,900mAh of juice, mated to a marginally larger 5.2-inch display.

The LG G5 has a 2,800mAh cell for an even larger 5.3″ screen, while the outgoing G4 relies on the same 3,000mAh capacity to power a 5.5-inch display. Yes, both LG smartphones are bigger, but who’s to blame if the company doesn’t have a flagship offering close to the 5″ mark? In their favor though, both models feature a removable battery. Now, LG does make the Nexus 5X, and that’s a flagship of sorts with a 5.2-inch display and a 2,700mAh cell.

The iPhone 6s, on the other hand, has a lowly 1,715mAh battery to feed a 4.7-inch display.

It’s what the Galaxy S7 does with its 3,000 milliamp hours that actually matters, though, as we’ve seen plenty of impressive specsheets that couldn’t transfer into reasonable battery life. So as usual we carried out our array of battery tests, and while the summary can be found in the review, we’ll get into a little bit more detail in these few paragraphs here.

The Galaxy S7 does very well, to put it simply. Starting with voice calls over a 3G network, the S7 can outlast all of the above (well, we can’t be sure about the Mi 5 and G5 just yet). And even then, it’s the Galaxy S6 that comes closest, not one of the competing brands. The Xperia Z5 follows, at a distance of almost 5 hours behind the S7. The iPhone 6s fares rather miserably in this respect with less than 10 hours of talk time on a charge.

Talk time

Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE
46:44h


Gionee Marathon M5
38:07h


Lenovo Vibe Z2 Pro
33:20h


Huawei Ascend Mate2 4G
33:19h


Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)
32:54h


Xiaomi Redmi 3
32:53h


Oppo R7 Plus
30:46h


OnePlus 2
30:29h


Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+
30:29h


Motorola DROID Turbo
30:09h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL
29:46h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL LTE
29:46h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL LTE Dual SIM
29:46h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL Dual SIM
29:46h


Huawei Honor 5X
29:40h


Samsung Galaxy Note5
28:34h


HTC One (M8) for Windows
28:34h


Nokia Lumia 1520
28:34h


Samsung Galaxy Note 4
28:31h


Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet LTE
28:25h


Sony Xperia Z5 Compact
28:23h


Huawei G8
27:44h


Samsung Galaxy S5
27:37h


Sony Xperia Z1
26:53h


Huawei Mate 8
26:45h


Samsung Galaxy S6 active
26:29h


Motorola Moto X Play
26:28h


Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)
26:01h


Samsung P6800 Galaxy Tab 7.7
25:45h


LG G3
25:38h


LG G Pro 2
25:37h


LG G Flex
25:19h


Sony Xperia T2 Ultra
25:16h


LG G2
25:15h


Samsung Galaxy A7
25:12h


BlackBerry Passport
25:12h


Huawei Ascend Mate
25:12h


Samsung Galaxy A7 Duos
25:12h


Motorola Nexus 6
25:03h


Samsung Galaxy A8
25:02h


Samsung Galaxy A8 Duos
25:02h


Alcatel Hero
25:02h


Oppo N1
25:01h


Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo
24:52h


Sony Xperia Z Ultra
24:23h


Oppo R7s
24:03h


Apple iPhone 6 Plus
23:49h


LG AKA
23:20h


Sony Xperia Z3
23:13h


Meizu PRO 5
23:10h


Microsoft Lumia 640 LTE Dual SIM
23:09h


Microsoft Lumia 640 LTE
23:09h


Microsoft Lumia 640 Dual SIM
23:09h


Oppo R7
22:58h


Samsung Galaxy S7
22:57h


Samsung P6200 Galaxy Tab 7.0 Plus
22:42h


Motorola Moto E (2nd gen)
22:36h


Motorola Moto X Style
22:23h


ZTE Nubia Z9
22:20h


Huawei MediaPad 7 Vogue
22:16h


Nokia Lumia 1320
22:13h


Samsung Galaxy Core LTE
22:13h


Lenovo ZUK Z1
22:13h


Sony Xperia Z2
22:13h


HTC One Max
22:13h


Nokia Lumia 1020
22:13h


Sony Xperia C3 Dual
22:11h


Yota YotaPhone 2
22:09h


Meizu MX4 Pro
22:09h


Samsung ATIV SE
22:05h


Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (MediaTek)
22:02h


Xiaomi Redmi Note
21:41h


Samsung Galaxy Note Edge
21:39h


Motorola RAZR MAXX
21:18h


Xiaomi Mi 4i
21:02h


Meizu m2 note
20:55h


Huawei Nexus 6P
20:50h


LG Optimus G Pro E985
20:45h


HTC One M9
20:44h


Sony Xperia Z1 Compact
20:42h


Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
20:40h


Sony Xperia Z5 Premium
20:27h


Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX
20:24h


Asus Zenfone Selfie ZD551KL
20:22h


Motorola RAZR i XT890
20:07h


Huawei Ascend Mate7
20:06h


Samsung Galaxy A3 Duos
20:04h


Samsung Galaxy E7
20:04h


Samsung Galaxy A3
20:04h


Oppo Find 7
20:03h


Samsung Galaxy S5 Active
20:01h


BlackBerry Q10
20:00h


OnePlus One
19:56h


Samsung Galaxy Grand 2
19:55h


Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3 I9200
19:54h


Sony Xperia SP
19:49h


Sony Xperia T3
19:48h


Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
19:48h


Samsung Galaxy S6
19:48h


HTC Butterfly 2
19:23h

Samsung’s latest nearly hit the 15-hour mark in video playback, a result the rest here can’t even dream of coming close to. The S6 puts up a semblance of a fight, but is dead in about 12 hours, and the iPhone 6s can’t make it to 11 hours. The 8-hour endurance of the Xperia Z5 is mediocre, but Nexus 5X with 6:23h is the real disappointment here.

Video playback

Gionee Marathon M5
26:24h


LG G Flex
19:57h


Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)
18:36h


Oppo R7 Plus
18:04h


Samsung Galaxy S6 active
18:03h


Meizu PRO 5
18:02h


Huawei Ascend Mate2 4G
18:01h


Samsung Galaxy Note 4
17:52h


Xiaomi Redmi 3
17:50h


Motorola RAZR MAXX
16:35h


Samsung Galaxy J7
16:22h


Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
15:03h


Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet LTE
14:58h


Samsung Galaxy E7
14:57h


Samsung Galaxy S7
14:50h


Motorola DROID RAZR MAXX
14:17h


Lenovo ZUK Z1
14:14h


Oppo R7s
14:05h


Huawei Ascend Mate7
14:04h


Apple iPhone 6s Plus
13:57h


Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+
13:53h


Samsung Galaxy Note5
13:51h


Motorola DROID Turbo
13:41h


Samsung Galaxy Note 3
13:32h


Samsung I9190 Galaxy S4 mini
13:12h


Nokia Lumia 1020
13:12h


Sony Xperia T2 Ultra
13:12h


HTC One Max
13:11h


Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)
13:08h


Sony Xperia Z5 Compact
13:04h


Motorola Moto E (2nd gen)
13:04h


Sony Xperia C
12:53h


Samsung Galaxy S5 Active
12:51h


Samsung Galaxy Premier I9260
12:51h


Huawei Honor 6
12:51h


Samsung Galaxy A8
12:45h


Samsung Galaxy A8 Duos
12:45h


Meizu MX4 Pro
12:41h


Huawei Mate 8
12:34h


Nokia Lumia 1520
12:31h


Samsung I9505 Galaxy S4
12:30h


BlackBerry Q5
12:28h


Sony Xperia C3 Dual
12:22h


Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
12:21h


Huawei Ascend Mate
12:18h


Sony Xperia Z2
12:16h


Samsung Galaxy S6
12:12h


Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
12:12h


Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1 LTE
12:10h


Motorola Moto X Play
12:06h


LG AKA
11:54h


Sony Xperia Z3
11:47h


Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo
11:38h


Samsung P6800 Galaxy Tab 7.7
11:37h


Asus Zenfone Selfie ZD551KL
11:32h


Samsung I9500 Galaxy S4
11:29h


Samsung Galaxy Note II N7100
11:27h


Huawei Mate S
11:26h


OnePlus One
11:23h


HTC One (E8)
11:16h


Samsung Galaxy S5
11:15h


Apple iPhone 6 Plus
11:15h


BlackBerry Q10
11:15h


Oppo N1
11:15h


HTC One (M8) for Windows
11:15h


Meizu m1 note
11:09h


Samsung Galaxy S5 mini
11:02h


Asus PadFone X
11:01h


Xiaomi Mi 4c
10:47h


BlackBerry Passport
10:46h


Apple iPhone 6s
10:46h


vivo X5Max
10:44h


vivo X5Pro
10:41h


Samsung Galaxy Note Edge
10:41h


Microsoft Lumia 950 XL
10:38h


Microsoft Lumia 950 XL Dual SIM
10:38h


Samsung Galaxy J2
10:35h


HTC Desire Eye
10:35h


LG G Flex2
10:35h


HTC Desire 816
10:34h


Apple iPhone 5s
10:31h


HTC Butterfly 2
10:26h


LG G2 mini
10:23h


Huawei G8
10:20h


Nokia Lumia 735
10:20h


Apple iPhone 5
10:12h


HTC One (M8)
10:11h


Xiaomi Mi 4i
10:11h


Samsung Galaxy K zoom
10:08h


Samsung ATIV SE
10:07h


Sony Xperia M2
10:04h


HTC First
10:03h


HTC One
10:02h


Motorola Moto X
10:01h


Sony Xperia Z1 Compact
10:01h


Motorola Nexus 6
10:01h


Nokia Lumia 635
10:00h


Nokia Lumia 630
10:00h


Huawei P8lite ALE-L04
10:00h


Samsung Galaxy Express I8730
10:00h


Sony Xperia Z5
7:53h


LG Nexus 5X
6:52h

It’s really just web browsing that left us wanting, and not because the result is particularly bad, it’s just not better than the S6, and better than the S6 is what it should have been. The S7 calls it quits after 9 and a half hours on the web over Wi-Fi, when its predecessor can stay online for an hour and half longer.

We typically carry out the test with whatever proprietary browser there is pre-installed, and if the outcome is troubling, we repeat with Chrome to rule out any poor optimization from in-house software engineers. So we did on the S7 (just in case, not that we doubt Samsung’s team) and the result came out at a little over 10 hours – an insignificant difference to warrant the Chome numbers making it to the score card.

All that said, the S7 still manages to outlast the LG G4 and the Nexus 5X, by an hour and an hour and a half respectively. The iPhone 6s shows impressive efficiency and despite the significantly smaller capacity manages a massive 3 hours more than the S7, and yet it’s no match for the Xperia Z5’s 14 and a half hours.

Web browsing

Gionee Marathon M5
30:51h


Huawei Mate 8
17:05h


Huawei Ascend Mate2 4G
16:41h


Sony Xperia E4
16:40h


Samsung Galaxy S6 active
16:25h


Xiaomi Redmi 3
15:11h


Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet LTE
15:05h


Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
14:52h


Sony Xperia Z5
14:35h


Meizu MX4
14:06h


Huawei Ascend Mate7
13:53h


Huawei P8
13:32h


Samsung Galaxy A9 (2016)
13:26h


Samsung Galaxy S5 mini
13:14h


HTC Butterfly 2
13:11h


Meizu m1 note
13:05h


Huawei Honor 6
12:59h


Meizu PRO 5
12:51h


Sony Xperia C
12:45h


Motorola Moto E (2nd gen)
12:42h


Nokia Lumia 1520
12:40h


Sony Xperia Z1 Compact
12:37h


HTC One (M8) for Windows
12:31h


HTC Desire 700 dual sim
12:30h


HTC One (M8)
12:29h


Apple iPhone 6s
12:27h


Samsung Galaxy A8
12:18h


ZTE Nubia Z9
12:18h


Samsung Galaxy A8 Duos
12:18h


Sony Xperia T2 Ultra
12:17h


Sony Xperia Z3
12:03h


Samsung Galaxy A7 (2016)
11:55h


Nokia XL
11:54h


Motorola Moto X Play
11:52h


Sony Xperia Z3+
11:51h


Apple iPhone 6s Plus
11:51h


HTC Desire 816
11:48h


Sony Xperia C3 Dual
11:47h


LG G2
11:42h


Samsung Galaxy A5
11:36h


Samsung Galaxy A5 Duos
11:36h


Meizu m1 metal
11:33h


Sony Xperia E4g
11:32h


Sony Xperia Z2
11:32h


Motorola DROID Turbo
11:31h


Sony Xperia E1
11:30h


Sony Xperia ZR
11:20h


HTC One Max
11:20h


Sony Xperia Z5 Compact
11:20h


HTC Butterfly S
11:07h


Asus PadFone X
11:07h


LG G2 mini
11:02h


Samsung Galaxy Note 4
11:01h


Nokia Lumia 1320
10:58h


Samsung Galaxy S6 edge
10:56h


Samsung Galaxy S6
10:56h


HTC Desire 510
10:53h


Microsoft Lumia 532 Dual SIM
10:52h


Motorola Moto G 4G
10:52h


Microsoft Lumia 532
10:52h


Microsoft Lumia 950 XL
10:50h


Microsoft Lumia 950 XL Dual SIM
10:50h


Lenovo ZUK Z1
10:46h


Samsung Galaxy Note5
10:43h


Oppo R7 Plus
10:39h


Huawei Honor 7
10:38h


LG AKA
10:38h


Nokia Lumia 830
10:36h


Apple iPhone 6
10:29h


Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+
10:25h


Meizu MX4 Pro
10:24h


Microsoft Lumia 640 LTE Dual SIM
10:23h


Microsoft Lumia 640 LTE
10:23h


Microsoft Lumia 640 Dual SIM
10:23h


Nokia Lumia 630
10:18h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL
10:14h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL Dual SIM
10:14h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL LTE
10:14h


Microsoft Lumia 640 XL LTE Dual SIM
10:14h


BlackBerry Passport
10:12h


Xiaomi Redmi Note 3 (MediaTek)
10:12h


BlackBerry Q5
10:04h


HTC Desire Eye
10:02h


HTC One (E8)
10:02h


Nokia Lumia 635
10:00h


Huawei G8
10:00h


Huawei Honor 5X
10:00h


Apple iPhone 5s
9:58h


HTC One
9:58h


Apple iPhone 5
9:56h


Samsung Ativ Odyssey I930
9:54h


Meizu m2 note
9:54h


Samsung Galaxy A5 (2016)
9:52h


Sony Xperia E3
9:48h


Sony Xperia M2
9:48h


Samsung I9190 Galaxy S4 mini
9:47h


OnePlus One
9:46h


Huawei Mate S
9:43h


Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Neo
9:43h


Alcatel Hero
9:40h


Samsung Galaxy S5
9:39h


Samsung Galaxy S7
9:34h


LG Nexus 5X
8:32h


LG G4
7:54h

The numbers above add up to a combined endurance rating of 80 hours, still better than any of the other devices we mentioned. The Galaxy S6 and the Xperia Z5 both have a 73-hour endurance rating, for a shared second spot. No bronze will be awarded.

Oh, wait, Always On display. You see, our proprietary battery testing procedure includes a standby test, which is included in the formula for overall rating, but we don’t post it on the scorecard. Standby is rarely the dominant contributor to power consumption, with large displays being a far heavier burden on the battery.

Well, with the Always On display enabled some of that display is being lit up and that inevitably has a detrimental effect on battery life. Samsung says that it runs in the ballpark of 1% battery drain per hour and our findings seem to corroborate that.

A clock and background image was our choice (those pictured above, actually) – sort of a middle ground in terms is content volume being displayed. With AOD on, overall rating takes a huge hit and drops to 49 hours. Whether the trade off is worth it is largely up to you.

Samsung Galaxy S7 battery life