IDLE Battery Life

Some tiggit mail users have been experimenting with tiggit’s IMAP IDLE functionality. One of their concerns is that the BlackBerry battery life is severely compromised as a result of enabling IDLE.

I have started running a test to benchmark the impact of maintaining an IDLE session on battery life.

The test is set up as follows. I have a BlackBerry Curve 8210 that uses GPRS over Vodafone in the UK, on a regular data package. It is running tiggit mail 0.1.48 and is connecting to gmail over IMAP. Obviously tiggit has useIDLE set and has no value in idleRefresh – so it is using the default.

I also need to simulate email activity and so have set up a cron job on a webserver to send an email to my gmail account five times an hour on an irregular schedule. Actually at these minutes past the hour 10,20,40,45 and 47.

I started the test running at 11:00 this morning with a fully charged battery, and it is now nearly 3pm, and the battery shows about 5% used. (I guess a tool to tell me precisely how much battery has been used would be handy, and should only take a few minutes to write.)

As an aside, there have been a few questions about data use, so this test will probably be repeated with some additional data use tracking enabled in the code.

UPDATE At 8pm: I have written a little tool that tells me the battery use reported by the handheld. After 9 hours of running in IDLE mode, the BlackBerry Curve is reporting 83% battery.

UPDATE At 11pm: The Curve has been running for 12 hours in IDLE mode, and the battery is reporting 77%. I have shutdown the test for now, and turned off the BlackBerry for now.

No UPDATE on Monday, as I have been fixing packaging issues all day. Will restart the tests tomorrow.

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