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Optimized Battery Charging

What is optimized charging?

Optimized charging, also called optimized battery charging, is a built-in feature of more modern electronic devices, especially mobile phones and laptops. It helps preserve the health of the battery and reduce the memory effect in lithium-ion batteries.

The device learns the user’s charging patterns and regulates the charge during prolonged charging times. Smartphones also use the information from alarms or sleep profiles and do not disturb mode to know when the user will leave the device plugged in for a long time. 

How does optimized charging work?

Optimized charging works in slightly different ways depending on the device and its operating system; however, the general principle is as follows: by plugging it into the electric current, the device fast-charges up to 80% of the battery capacity. The remaining 20% is slow-charged, regulating the charging time to the estimated time the apparatus will be unplugged.

For example, if a cellphone has an alarm clock set for 7:00 in the morning and the user starts charging at midnight, the device will most likely stay plugged in for those 7 hours. Depending on those times, the device will regulate charging so that the user has a 100% charge when they wake up.

In laptops, optimized charging works a little differently. By having the feature turned on, the device can stay plugged in indefinitely, but charging stays at less than 100%. When this level is reached, the battery will record a 100% smart charge, even if this level does not correspond to the battery’s total capacity.

What are the benefits of using optimized charging?

Completely charging and discharging batteries reduces their capacities and has negative effects on their long-term performance. Optimized charging helps avoid this by:

  • Reducing the memory effect.
  • Prolonging its useful life.
  • Decreasing the wear and tear on the cells where fast charging takes place.

Are there any reasons not to use optimized charging?

Optimized charging should not be activated when charging the battery in the shortest possible time is necessary. For laptops, this mode should be disabled when you need to have a true 100% charge because you likely won’t be able to charge it again for a long time, such as when you’re traveling.

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