Dual-battery design for the iPhone

The Diggnation netcast spoiled some of the beans about Apple’s iPhone, saying that it will have a dual-battery design, one for the music portion and one of the phone portion of the handset. It is not clear if the iPhone will actually have two physically separated batteries in it, or a single “partitioned” battery but personally I would go with the second option because it would be easier to implement, it’s cheaper, less confusing when you put the handset together, and also it could be cool if you had a preference panel with a slider to dynamically change how much battery you want for your phone or for your music (kinda like how pre-WinMob5 PDAs could partition their RAM dynamically & user-selectably into ’storage’ and ‘program memory’).

In a previous blog post of mine about the iPhone I wrote that one of the most important hurdles that Apple will have to go over in order to win iPhone customers would be the battery life: people are afraid to use their cellular handset as an mp3 player for too long. Back then I imagined that Apple would have to be hard at work at delivering new, high-tech long-lived batteries, but Apple solved the problem sideways. The dual battery design is in fact a briliant idea business-wise. Ultimately, the user probably won’t have overall more battery life compared to other handsets in the market, but he/she will have a peace of mind — and that’s what matters.

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