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Future iPhones, iPads, Mac laptops may tell you when their battery is getting low

Future iPhones — and perhaps iPads and Macs — may alert you when their battery is getting low, as evidenced by a newly granted Apple patent (number 10,970,185) for “smart advice to charge notification.” Or they could send an alert via, say, an Apple Watch that you need to recharge.

The tech giant says that often, a “battery low” indication that is based on a fixed threshold of charge remaining isn’t received in time for the user to take a corrective action. For example, if a user typically charges her smart phone at night, but forgets to do so on one occasion, receiving a “battery low” indication just before leaving for work the next day does not leave the user time to charge her phone before work. 

The newly granted patent involves systems and methods for advising a user “when an energy storage device in a computing system [smartphones, tablets, laptops] needs charging. The charge level can be measured and be used to generate a rate of charge histogram and an acceleration of charge histogram. 

These can be used to predict when a user will charge next, and whether the energy storage device will have an amount of energy below a predetermined threshold amount before the next predicted charging time. In the patent data, Apple says that a “first device can determine when a second device typically charges and whether the energy storage device in the second device will have an amount of energy below the predetermined threshold amount before the next predicted charge time for the second device.” Apple adds that “the first device can generate an advice to charge notification to the user on either, or both, devices.”

Dennis Sellers
the authorDennis Sellers
Dennis Sellers is the news editor of Apple World Today. He’s been an “Apple journalist” since 1995 (starting with the first big Apple news site, MacCentral). He loves to read, run, play sports, and watch movies.