Why Are mAh Ratings Important?

If you own an Android or Apple device, chances are you know exactly what type of port it has, as well as the necessary connector for that port. You also know what OS you are working with and the memory capacity of your device. One thing many device owners are unaware of, or don’t even know about is the mAh rating of their device. The mAh (milli amp per hour) rating of a device is the capacity of a devices battery in terms of how long it can hold a charge, as well as the necessary energy to keep it running. So figure that if a device has a 1500 mAh rating, it means that it can draw 150 milli amps per hour from the battery and the device can last 10 hours on a single charge. Why is this important information? Not only does knowing it help you choose the best accessories and replacement parts for your phone, it helps you determine how long your device can function on a single charge. Here are 5 other reasons why you should pay attention to your device’s mAh rating:

  1. Power Banks– Knowing your device’s mAh will not only help you to choose the most efficient power bank but it will help you determine how many ‘charges’ you can get out of it. For example, if you own an iPad 3 which has a 11666 mAh, you wouldn’t want the power bank that only has a 10000 mAh rating. That means you will not even be able to get 2 full charges out of it, before ending up with an empty power bank.


  1. Standby Time– The mAh rating is also reflective of the amount of power the device’s battery pulls while it is on, and not in use. A lot of people think that just because the phone is in ‘stand-by mode’, that the battery isn’t being utilized. Unless the power is completely off, your phone will still pull power from the battery. If your device has a larger mAh, you will not have to charge it as often as a device with a lower mAh. This is one thing to keep in mind if you’re planning to purchase a new device or even a replacement battery and also why many devices have different battery lives.


  1. Smartphones vs. Tablets– Since smartphones require a lot of power to operate the many apps, programs, and advanced OS in many of them, they have higher mAh ratings than that of a standard mobile phone. Even if the smartphones are the same brand, different models will have different mAh ratings. For example, the mAh rating of an iPhone 4 is 1420, and the iPhone 5, which is one step above that, has a mAh rating of 1440. Tablets are very similar in the types of programs they operate but because they are a larger size and can do a bit more than a smartphone, they tend to have the highest mAh ratings of all mobile technology.


  1. Charging Time– The lower the mAh rating on a device, the faster it will take to re-charge, and vice versa. This is something to consider when choosing a device, because how long are you willing to wait for your device to re-charge? Smartphone giants, Samsung and Apple, each have their own fan following that helps them stay at the top of their game. However, if you closely look at the two, Samsung phones have higher mAh ratings, which means that compared to Apple, their devices will take slightly longer to charge.


  1. Replacement Batteries– With older devices many people choose to purchase a replacement battery rather than trade the device for a new one, since the original batteries lose their strength as they get older with repeated charges. Should you decide to replace the battery, knowing what the phone can handle, power-wise, will prevent damage or loss of functionality. You never want to put a battery in your phone that is lower than its mAh; but you can put a battery in your phone with a higher mAh than the original battery, to extend the life of the device’s battery charge. Never use a battery that is not compatible with the model of your device because you risk damaging the device, or even worse, causing an electrical short which may lead to fire.

Knowing all of your device’s mAh ratings may be difficult, but at least you have the understanding of why it is such an important aspect of mobile technology. Whether you find yourself shopping for a power bank, deciding which brand of smartphone to choose or wanting to revive your favorite device, you can do so knowing that just by looking at the mAh, you can figure out if the device is compatible with your lifestyle.

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