Researchers’ app extends battery life when you’re multitasking

The app works by automatically creating dimming profiles when you enable the app, and invoking them as vignette-like screen overlays based on predicted power consumption. The goal is always to keep the expected power draw lower than what you’d normally see in a given situation. In tests, it delivered meaningful gains of about 10 to 25 percent per hour. That could make the difference between having to plug in early after a multitasking session or waiting until you get home.

You can’t download MultiDroid at the moment, and it’s not clear if or when it would be available, whether as an app or as a built-in feature. And it won’t benefit phones with LCD screens, as you might have guessed. The app works precisely because OLEDs can dim or shut off individual pixels — mobile LCD lighting tends to be an all or nothing affair. Nonetheless, this hints at a future where you wouldn’t have to worry about your phone’s longevity just because you can handle two things at once.

MultiDroid in action

Bottom image credit: Ginny, C. Kumar, K. Naik and M.K. Rohit

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